Cristiano Ronaldo missed out on Manchester United’s entire pre-season tour because of “family reasons” and eventually returned to the Carrington training ground with agent Jorge Mendes in tow. With United missing out on Champions League football for the season ahead, and Ronaldo a few months away from turning 38, he reportedly is keen to leave before the transfer window ends.

Sporting Lisbon, who have been drawn in a relatively easy Champions League group, would be an option if Ronaldo was willing to massively reduce his wages. It would see him return to the club where it all started but it doesn’t appear as though he is prepared to lower his salary to what would be required for the Portuguese side to bring him back.

This week, reports suggest that Mendes has been in touch with Napoli, suggesting a deal that would see Ronaldo move to Italy and Nigerian striker Victor Osimhen moving in the other direction.

Osimhen’s agent, Roberto Calenda, has distanced his player from the transfer on Twitter though.

No negotiations in progress, no swaps. Victor Osimhen is a Napoli player and wants to play the Champions League with Napoli after winning it on the pitch with pride together with the coach and his teammates.

Earlier, the player himself claimed he had spoken to Aurelio De Laurentiis, Napoli’s president, with them underlining their plans to keep him in the team.

I spoke to the president, he is the one who decides, and he reassured me by explaining the club’s plans. I am happy with what he told me.

Osimhen has started this season in great form, scoring in both of Napoli’s games so far this season, as well as providing an assist, with the Italian side currently one point off the top of the table having played a game less than Lazio who are first.

The 23-year-old striker scored 18 goals in 32 appearances in all competitions last season after signing for a club record of €70 million from Lille in 2020. His international scoring record is also impressive, with 15 goals in 22 appearances for Nigeria, with five of those coming in the four appearances he made in the Africa Cup of Nations in 2022.

Reports suggest United would need to part with £85million to bring Osimhen to Manchester, and Ronaldo would spend the final year of his contract on loan in Serie A.