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Ronaldo Quotes: His Love For United

It’s hard to think of a player who has left a club but has gone on to repeatedly express their love and respect for those they have left more than Cristiano Ronaldo has since leaving Manchester United.

On the club

June 21st 2009: “It would not feel right to play for anybody else in England apart from Manchester United. They have been my home for so long and it would feel like I was cheating if I played for anybody else.”

July 2nd 2009: “I have a sentimental attachment; I have spent a quarter of my life here. I was boy when I arrived at Manchester United and I’m leaving a man. This club and its fans will always have a place in my heart. I have learnt a lot of life lessons here, and I will never forget all the things I have been taught by so many people.”

July 8th 2009: “I spent six years at United and I owe them everything that I am today. I made history at United and won many trophies. It was a pleasure to play at Old Trafford.”

September 25th 2009: “Every time I can I try to watch United’s games on television. I still like to know what’s happening at Old Trafford. And despite being at Real I’m always happy when I know when United have won.”

October 31st 2009: “United fans shouldn’t worry too much about the team. They are still a good side and have good players to come back. As for Manchester City, I can’t ever see them being as big as United. United have all the tradition and you cannot make history in two or three years irrespective of how much money you have. City simply cannot buy what United have. I don’t know if they tried to get me but I wouldn’t play for any other English club but United.”

April 24th 2012: “Of course I miss Manchester. I especially miss the apple crumble and custard they served at Carrington after training — it was amazing!”

May 18th 2012: “I had a bet that Manchester United would win the league but I lost. I feel very disappointed because United are still in my heart. City have a fantastic team now, but I think Manchester will carry on being kings of England.”

November 25th 2012: “There are three or four teams who can perhaps win the league, which is why it is the most competitive anywhere in the world. It will be tough for every team but I think United will do it this year and win their title back. It won’t be easy and it will be very close, but United are stronger in attack this season and that could be the difference.”

February 3rd 2013: “Madrid and United are the two biggest clubs in the world and it’s a real 50-50. It could go either way. Manchester was my home and still is in my heart. I love it. Because when people treat you very well you never forget that. And I will never forget United, the people who work there and the supporters. So I am so happy to be going back to Manchester.”

February 13th 2013: “To play for City not United? I’m not going to do that. Why? Because my heart’s in Manchester United, that’s why. I can say it would be very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very, very difficult to play at Manchester City. Very difficult because of Manchester United.”

On Ferguson

June 21st 2009: “I have said many times that it is the relationship a son has with a father. He taught me everything about football and I have never met a man who is so passionate about the game after so many years. He instilled that passion into me and he made me a winner. The most important thing he taught me is that second place is not an option. He also taught me lots of things in order to make me a better person and people might not understand how much time he invests in players off the pitch. But he really does and he cares about each and every one of us. In an ideal world, I would like him to be my life coach and for me to never leave him but that is not possible and I just have to continue my journey and hold on to what he has taught me. Sir Alex has shown so much confidence in me and for that I owe him everything. When I arrived – even though I did not want it – he insisted I have number seven on my shirt. I was very adamant that I did not want it. Then, he sat me down and told me about the history of the number seven and said…’do you understand what I am trying to say to you? I think you will be worthy of wearing this shirt.’ When I think of the greats who have worn that United shirt, I understood how much confidence he had in me. And I hope now that I am another Manchester United great who wore the most famous shirt at the club.”

July 2nd 2009: “I will miss the boss. Sir Alex has taught me so much on and off the field. I could not have asked for a better mentor. I will always owe him a lot and will never forget him. He made me aware from the start that I would be one of the best players in the world; he gave me that belief. When you are 17, you are just concerned about playing first-team football – you don’t think about being the best, but Sir Alex gave me the No 7 shirt because he believed I could do it justice. I can never repay the confidence he has shown in me over the years, and all the support he has given me in my journey to become the best.”

July 8th 2009: “Ferguson is a maestro. For me he was my father in football. He was crucial in my career and, outside football, was a great human being with me. Talent isn’t everything. You can have it from the cradle, but it is necessary to learn the trade to be the best. When I arrived in England I was an 18-year-old kid and had established stars by my side. Ferguson taught me to clean up my faults, to know to give the pass at the last moment, to take the right decision in the area.”

November 6th 2011: “Sir Alex has a special place in my life. In fact, he was the main man. I was not famous, I was not a star. I arrived at Old Trafford as just another young talent. He was the one who told me to do all the right things. He gave me the opportunity to play in one of the biggest clubs in the world. So he is one of the most important people in the world for me. I worked with Sir Alex for a few years and I know he deserves ­everything that he has achieved in his career. He works so hard, he is clever, he has experience, he is a human guy.”

November 25th 2012: “I met Alex Ferguson on the day of the game, he came to our hotel in Manchester to speak with Jose Mourinho. Of course I talked to him as well. We keep in touch. It was nice to see him again. We just talked about his times with Manchester United and mine with Real Madrid. We were just happy to see each other.”

On United fans

June 21st 2009: “I really could not have asked for any more from them. There were times when the whole of England was against me but they stood strong in their support and belief for me. While opposition fans’ hate made me stronger, the love of the United support also made me stronger. I just want to say thank you for all their support. I will never forget them and I hope I have given them memories that will always be with them.”

August 28th 2009: “I did not get a chance to say goodbye to the fans but I hope they know that I enjoyed every moment playing at Old Trafford and would like to thank them for their support throughout the years. Even in the most difficult times I have always felt their support.”

December 30th 2009: “We know that we have the duty to put on a show but sometimes it’s not possible. We always try but at times the team are not playing well and the fans could give us more support. The Manchester United fans, for example, were very intimidating for Liverpool or Manchester City in those matches. I think that if our supporters tried to do that it would be much better for everyone and would give the players a big boost.”

On a United return

February 14th 2010: “Of course I miss playing for Manchester United. I played there for six years and that’s a long time. I am still interested in watching Manchester United and, you never know, maybe in the future I could return to play there. It’s always possible. I want to fulfil my contract here but, in the future, only God knows. I will not say I am not happy here at Real Madrid. I am really happy and everyone knows this is my club but, of course, I miss Manchester United, the boss, the players, because I left family there.”

November 14th 2010: “To be honest I miss the Premier League a lot. Of course I have good memories about Manchester. I have good friends there and I miss them a lot, so you never know.”

September 6th 2011: “I don’t close the door, so maybe in the future I hope so, because I know the league, I know the players, I know the atmosphere. Why not? I hope so one day, but you never know.”

May 18th 2012: “The future? Nobody knows. But I feel very happy here. It’s a great club, fantastic fans… it’s great. In one year or two you never know. A man’s head is always complicated.”

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About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

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  1. FletchTHEMAN says:

    Come home to United son and all “might” be forgiven. Bit of talent sure, but he left us for what.
    3 years of abuse from Madrid fans? Ha. Well played son!

    Hope he falls flat tonight, really won’t ever forgive him if he wins them the game.

    Go on son, toddle along.

    Hope the fans rip him a new one tonight. He and Mourine deserve choruses of “Your not special anymore!” HA

  2. United till I die says:

    Fuck me can we not put the Ronaldo lovefest on hold on one fucking day.

  3. Ed says:

    I’m sick of this boguis love-in. He left us. He scored against us in Madrid. He is coming back to Manchester to try and knock us out.

    Hope he flops and gets frustrated and mardy.

  4. Ed says:

    Boguis = Portuguese for bogus. Not a typo :)

  5. Vass says:

    I for one had tears in my eyes reading that… Will never forget the memories he gave us and sincerely hope he’ll one day return to wear the red shirt to write some more. Viva Ronaldo, but not today, please

  6. mancdub says:

    He showed no respect in the 3 years leading up to his transfer. He treated United like he’s treating Madrid now and he will no doubt treat his next club. Every thing has to be about him.
    Don’t get me wrong I think he’s an amazing player. Being slightly too young to of seen and really appreciate George Best. Ronaldo is the most technically gifted player I’ve seen in almost 40 years of following United. But as a person he comes across as a bit of a prick.

  7. Nothing but RvP says:

    I absolutely love how King Eric and CR7 refers to our club as Manchester

    but sentiments aside, it’s all about United progressing into the quarters tonight, so screw Ronnie, let’s go through tonight and talk about Ronnie come end of the season

  8. Jocke says:

    How fucking bitter are some of the people commenting here?

    Why can’t you just appreciate that one of the best players in the history of the game played for United and was our best player during that time. He always speaks well of United but as a Portuguese always wanted to play in Spain. That is not so difficult to understand. Real is more attractive for “superstars” due to their history in the European Cup, and perhaps also because of the climate.

    I hope and think Ronaldo will be welcomed when he enters Old Trafford and after that be treated like any other player former player; with respect.

  9. RedBorneo says:

    Come on Scott.. He’s not dead yet He still alive and ready to kill us tonite. Sure you can wrote more than a memories..

  10. Costas says:

    Don’t know if I can hold back the tears any longer.

  11. montanared says:

    viva Ryan Giggs, viva Ryan Giggs, running down the wing ….

  12. NBI Red Onion says:

    why did Owen get the No 7 shirt?

  13. akanemo says:

    the last 5 hours i spend at work before watching the game. OMG so stressful. My palms have been sweaty all day and i cant type for @#$@#

  14. five says:

    As a fan from “this” generation, I didnt get Cantona or Best…Ronaldo was the player who from day one I was fascinated with, he wasnt world class but there was just something about him and I would always argue with my Chelsea supporting friends about how good he was(Ronaldo vs Joe Cole was the debate…well time has shown us who won that one!).

    I watched the Portugal-England game horror struck cause I was certain he would leave, I never imagined he would come back as the beast that he was. He was the first player I saw blossom to that extent, many of you saw the class of 1999 blossom but for this generation it was Ronaldo and he’ll always have a special place in my heart.

    But tonight? I hope we hammer him and the rest of his team-mates, Glory Glory Man United not Glory Glory Cristiano Ronaldo.

  15. denton davey says:

    Absence makes the heart grow fonder but when you look at CR7′s UTD sojourn it breaks down into three phases – three years of apprenticeship, two years of mastery, and one year of leaving dangerously. He peaked in 2008 and was already destined for Madrid but it seems that SAF squeezed one more year from him – a year in which he was moody, selfish, uninterested, and playing out the string which (in a way) was mirrored in his performance in the 2009 final when he damned-nearly scored at the get-go but after Barcelona did score in the tenth minute you felt that the air went out of his balloon. In some sense, his departure was an anti-climax. And his return – “only God knows” and she’s not telling.

  16. Chicho The Lesbo says:

    Of course there is still love from us for him…and why not, he’s playing for Madrid so his job is to score against us. Didn’t Law score for Citeh even though he was thinking it would relegate us? We still love him to pieces. Just doing their jobs as true professionals.

  17. Chicho The Lesbo says:

    Still, I hope he falls flat on his face…GO UNITED!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  18. domunited says:

    he knows what to say, and that’s what makes him a PR specialist’s darling. at least he gives respect where respect is due: Sir Alex and the fans. i really don’t get my fellow supporters who rag on him for wanting away at the end of MUFC Part I (?!?); he did stay another year, and he id give us another championship. that team, back in ’09, needed a revamp, and letting a want-away CR7 go to Madrid was a necessary move.

    whether he comes back to the club or goes elsewhere, i’ll respect his work on the pitch and the silverware his talents helped bring to old trafford. but seriously, let’s stop stroking his ego today – is this some part of an elaborate conspiracy to coax him back to the club?

  19. vt5060 says:

    “I think United will do it this year and win their title back” – Ronnie knows the title’s still ours even when we don’t win it.

  20. redarmy says:

    @ chicho the lesbo

    laws didnt mean to score that goal he tryed to do that back heal to the keeper

  21. mancdub says:

    I can’t understand why people are so attached to him. He engineered his own transfer to Madrid. The last 2 international tournaments he went to as a United player he publicly stated his desire to leave us and join his dream club.
    We’ve been spoilt in recent years because players don’t feel the need to leave us to fulfil their ambitions. The last player to leave against the managers will was Kanchelskis in 95. So I suppose it gave us a taste of what it’s like to support a lesser club and it wasn’t pleasant.
    Would I welcome him back? Well I’ll support any player that wears the shirt but I wouldn’t like to spend another summer worrying about whether our best player was still going to be around come August. So no I wouldn’t.
    Our club is built on loyalty. We have a manager thats been in the job since 1986. We have a player who will make his 1000 appearance tonight. Loyalty is what were all about and Ronaldo was never loyal to us.

  22. Toms says:

    “The future? Nobody knows. ”

    Always loved him. Still find a bit of amusement with this line whenever I hear it.

    Madrid is always going to pay better and have a unique portuguese prestige but I could imagine him returning. Why? He won’t get loved like he was anywhere else.


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