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JUST IN: Joan Laporta breaks silence on Barcelona’s “Cristiano Ronaldo” transfer offer.

 

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Barcelona president Joan Laporta has refused to deny reports that the club were offered the chance to sign Manchester United striker Cristiano Ronaldo.

The 37-year-old Portuguese star has told United he wants to depart the club in search of Champions League football.

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Ronaldo has been linked with a host of European clubs, including Barcelona, despite his strong affiliation with fierce rivals Real Madrid.

 

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Since Ronaldo made his intentions clear, the Catalonian side have signed Robert Lewandowski, essentially ruling out a move.

 

When asked about the links to Ronaldo, Laporta told CBS Sports: ‘Well, this type of story is all within the process of the summer window. There always appears a lot of news. But in the end the truth is we wanted Lewandowski.

 

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‘We have a very good relationship with Jorge Mendes. I have known him for a long time. He is one of the best player agents. He knows how to do his job and I respect him. In this case, we decided to go for Lewandowski and knew he was crucial to our success.

 

‘So we went to Bayern instead. This is the reality. The other [Ronaldo] topic is just part of the “little history” of football. It’s a very nice story, but you will always hear lots of contradictory news about it.’

Asked whether he considered signing Ronaldo, Laporta refused to go into details but heaped praise on the Manchester United star.

‘Ronaldo is a very good professional and he’s still so fit. He’s a player who is very ambitious and competitive and I am sure he has a lot of options,’ he said.

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‘He’s still a player of Manchester United, an extraordinary club who I respect very much. His future is not my business. It’s the business of Manchester United and Cristiano.’

Barcelona have been one of the busiest teams in Europe this summer after signing Lewandowski, Raphinha, Jules Kounde, Franck Kessie and Andreas Christensen.

 

Meanwhile, having returned to training this week , Ronaldo took to Instagram on Friday night to announce that he will play in Sunday’s friendly against Rayo Vallecano.

 

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