Cristiano Ronaldo Officially Returns to Manchester United

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Wow! That escalated quickly! When most of us got up today, it was in a world where Cristiano Ronaldo was set to leave Juventus and join Manchester City. The idea certainly seemed soullessly mercenary at best, total treason at worst, given how Old Trafford is where the galactico really established himself.

However, as Friday went on, we saw a total reversal of fortune and now it’s official- the return of Cristiano Ronaldo to Manchester United is really here. United travel to Wolverhampton Wanderers on Sunday for Premier League fixture number three of the season, and the CR7 comeback will overshadow it all.

Manchester United at Wolves FYIs

Kickoff: Sun Aug. 29, 4:30 pm, Molineux

Watch Party/Book Signing: If you’re in the Chicago area, come on out to Fado and watch the match and meet the author “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America.

He’ll be signing copies of his book! For more information, see links and tweet above.

United Starting XI Prediction: go here

United Team News: go here

Series History: United wins 8  Draws  3  Wolves wins

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The United club statement reads: “Manchester United is delighted to confirm that the club has reached agreement with Juventus for the transfer of Cristiano Ronaldo, subject to agreement of personal terms, visa and medical.

“Cristiano, a five-time Ballon d’Or winner, has so far won over 30 major trophies during his career, including five Champions League titles, four FIFA Club World Cup, seven league titles in England, Spain and Italy, and the European Championship for his native Portugal.

“In his first spell for Manchester United, he scored 118 goals in 292 games. Everyone at the club looks forward to welcoming Cristiano back to Manchester.”

12 years after he left United to join Real Madrid, the 36-year-old Portugese moves to Old Trafford on a €15 million deal with a potential further €8m in add-ons, via ESPN.

Reportedly, City pulled out of the running on Friday, and talks with United didn’t begin until Thursday night. No doubt United club patriarch of all club patriarchs, Sir Alex Ferguson had a lot to do with making this happen.

Fergie is, was and always will be the football father of Cristiano Ronaldo.

Happy Cristiano Ronaldo return day to all the United supporters reading this.

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Hopefully, this isn’t too awkward for all the supporters who were cursing him out when they thought he was going to join City.

Paul M. Banks runs The Sports Bank, partnered with News NowBanks, the author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America” and “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry,” has regularly appeared in WGNSports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune.

Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.

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