CRISTIANO RONALDO is demanding a staggering £32million-a-year deal to stop him from returning to Manchester United.
Real Madrid superstar Ronaldo is considering his options at the Bernabeu and knows United will welcome him back with open arms.
The Spanish giants are adamant that Ronaldo will not be leaving them this summer and are now trying to agree a deal to keep their Portuguese idol for the rest of his career.
But Ronaldo, 28, is determined to cash in on his iconic status and is looking for a mega deal to make him the highest-paid footballer in history.
First up he wants an annual wage of £17m from Madrid, which works out at about £345,000 per week.
But he is also demanding 100 per cent of his image rights contract from the club, which could be worth as much as £15m per year.
Even a club as rich as Real Madrid have been shocked by the figures being bandied around by Ronaldo’s representatives.
And they are hoping they are just the player’s opening gambit in what could be long, complicated contract negotiations. Ronaldo, who cost Real a world record £80m when they signed him from United in 2009, still has two years of his current £200,000-a-week contract to run at the Bernabeu.
So president Florentino Perez believes there is plenty of time to haggle over a new deal before they seriously have to think about selling their brightest star.
But sources close to Ronaldo have indicated the player’s demands are not motivated by greed but his determination to prove himself to be the biggest star in the world.
Ronaldo is aware Barcelona rival Lionel Messi currently gets £14m a year and already has a 100 per cent image rights agreement with his club.
And he is determined to top that. But even Real, the richest club in the world, are unlikely to agree to those terms and will look to strike a compromise deal with a player who has scored 201 goals in four seasons at the Bernabeu.
United still refuse to rule out the prospect of tempting Ronaldo back to the Premier League but would have to smash their wage structure to even come close to matching his terms.
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