Following the shock return to Old Trafford, Cristiano Ronaldo is set to play for Manchester United against Newcastle on Saturday.
Ahead of the game, he has spoken to Wes Brown for MUTV about what it feels like to be back, what he hopes to bring to the club, as well a reflecting on his memories from the first spell at United.
I’m so happy to be back again. I’m so proud, I’m so excited and I’m looking forward to starting in the best way. I’m so happy, my family’s happy, everyone’s happy. I have great memories when I arrived here when I was 18 with you, Rio, Paul Scholes, Roy Keane, Gary Neville, it was my dream to play for Manchester United. I learnt a lot, we won everything here so to be back again, we have good memories, but this is a new time, a new generation. I’m still capable of helping the team, the new players, the young lads who have huge potential, so I’m here again to win and make history.
I’m feeling good. People they think I’m coming from the heart, but I’m coming to show I’m still capable to do my best. I’m here to win. People speak about my age but they should know I’m different. I am different. I’m different than the rest of the people. I show off all the time year by year and this year will be the same. I know 100% I will do good with the boys. These supporters are special. I hope they can push the team when the team needs it.
I am not here for a vacation. As I told you, before was good, to win important things when I wore the shirt before many years ago, but I am here to win again. I am capable, me and my team-mates. I am ready to go, I am ready to go. It is a good chance for me, for the supporters, for the club, to get one step ahead. I am ready and I think I will be a huge thing in the next three or four years.
The interview took place on the pitch at Old Trafford and Ronaldo discussed how it felt to be back.
It’s a good feeling to come here. I know that the people here are different. When I touched the ground in the airport on the first day, I felt the emotion. Not just because I’m a Manchester player, but because they saw me grow up from 18-years-old. I feel very emotional. I feel the desire and have good energy.
The pair stood on the touchline and reflected on the moment when Ronaldo made his debut as an 18-year-old against Bolton, replacing Nicky Butt in the second half. He admitted he will feel nervous again this Saturday but hopes this time he will be starting the game.
I was so nervous. I didn’t expect to play because when I signed for Manchester I thought I would be back to Portugal for one more year. Sir Alex Ferguson said ‘No, no, you’re going to stay here and you’re going to be in the squad for the game.’ I was super nervous. I called all my friends and I didn’t even expect to come on.
Of course I will be nervous on Saturday but I’m more mature, more experienced. I will be prepared. I’m going to make pressure to Ole now to start in the 11! So I’m ready to go.
There are plenty of familiar faces for Ronaldo in the backroom staff from the last time he was here and the player is looking to create a new history at the club.
It’s easy for me. I played with Ole, Carrick, Fletch and they know me, they know the way I play, so it’s great to be a part of this era of Manchester United. Right now, with the new generation, things have changed but the mentality of this club never changes. We’re here to win, to make history, and I want to put Manchester where they deserve to be. I will give my best.