- Cristiano Ronaldo joined Premier League club Manchester United in 2003, but reports say he could have joined Liverpool
- Former Manchester United assistant manager Phil Thompson disclosed that Alex Ferguson had to raise the fees to ensure the Red Devil sign him
- Ronaldo went on to become a cult hero at the club where he spent six years on his first spell, as he returned there this summer
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Reports have emerged that Premier League giants Liverpool missed out on signing Portuguese striker Cristiano Ronaldo before he joined Manchester United in 2003.
It was gathered that former Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson had to gazump the figures to ensure United beat their rivals to land the striker at the Old Trafford.
According to SunSport, former Man Utd assistant boss Phil Thompson disclosed that the Reds were one of many Premier League clubs looking to sign the star from Sporting CP.
It was gathered that Ronaldo already saw a move to Liverpool as a dream as his agents Paul Stretford, Jorge Mendes and Tony Henry were already negotiating his exit from Sporting CP.
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Thompson narrated how the deal with Liverpool in 2003 failed to materialise:
He noted via Tribal Football:
"I asked what kind of salary he would want and they said it was £1 million per year after tax. That was a lot for an 18-year-old kid but they said that was negotiable.
"It was a Sunday and I explained to them that I needed to go back to Liverpool and speak to Gerard Houllier and see what we could do. I fed all the information back to Gerard, who said he would speak to [chief executive] Rick Parry."
"Lo and behold, the following week I’m at Melwood when the yellow ticker on Sky Sports News says: Manchester United sign Cristiano Ronaldo from Sporting for £12.2m."
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His left-footed strike from close range saw his side break the deadlock in the 37th minute after receiving a pass from fellow Red Devils teammate Diogo Dalot.
He was substituted at halftime with Rafael Leao taking his place on the pitch for the remainder of the encounter.
Arsenal’s Ben White confident of facing Cristiano Ronaldo
White, who joined the Gunners from Brighton for £50million has had a promising start to life at the Emirates.
He did have a debut to forget as Arsenal suffered a 2-0 defeat in the hands of Brentford in their season opener.
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