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Hata la vista, Cristiano!

Robbo Robson | 11:46 UK time, Thursday, 11 June 2009

I suppose you're expecting some pearls of insight about England's win against Andorra. I have one. What a waste of reffing space.

No disrespect but... put Andorra, San Marino, Liechtenstein and the Footballing Goats of Skiathos in a qualifying group, so we don't have to watch them scratch and stumble through another good pasting. It's just plain silly.

Some fans had to walk to Wembley on Wednesday, which is more or less what the players did throughout the 90 minutes.

The only problem is when England get comfy against opposition as feeble as this, they start trying to play neat one-twos and crafty give-n-gos and suddenly you realise how limited the players are.

Still 6-0, seven wins out of seven, well done Fabio - and well done everyone in the camp for being downright embarrassed to even consider winning the World Cup. The golden generation couldn't do it, so unless this is the platinum variety we're best to keep schtum. (Mind, judging from some of the Saturday night earlobes on display, it could in fact be the diamond generation).
Cristiano Ronaldo
Anyway, the news in Football Land gathers pace and with Real Madrid newly minted from their spectral bank accounts, the day has finally arrived when the Premier League must say goodbye to the finest and most flaming well frustrating player the league has seen.

Ta-ra, Gelled Tumbler! No more shall you perplex Britain's finest physicists with your bamboozling dead-ball efforts. No more will you rise imperious at the back stick in a way that spawning salmon can only dream of in order to power home a header.

No more will you double-shuffle over a ball for no apparent reason except because you can. No more will you race like some chestnut thoroughbred toward the penalty box and then launch effortlessly into the horizontal before gravity finally takes hold and pulls you into a couple of forward rolls and the final writhing racked-with-pain theatricals that always undermine all the other stuff. Of course, he will still be doing all that, but at the Bernabeu.

I'll miss him. To think, three years ago he was just Nani with a step-over. The lad owes a lot to Ferguson. All the fancy-dannery did nowt for the team but clearly Sir Alex got him to knuckle down and the season of the 42 goals will never be surpassed in my lifetime.

And whatever else we feel about the bloke - and there's no doubt that referees will be pleased to see the back of him - he has scored some of the most remarkable goals the Premier League has seen.

I assume United will be in the market for Ribery now - well let's face it with £80m at their disposal they could probably successfully clone Cristiano 11 times and when they inevitably meet Real in the Champs league, Ronaldo would be up against 11 versions of himself. Trouble is he'd like that.

Not sure it would work, actually. It'd be just 11 poseurs railing at each other for 90 minutes - and United would have to hire an artic to truck in the hair product for every game.

It's good business for United. Ferguson knows when to sell the geese that lay the golden eggs. I have a feeling that while SAF could've pretty much laid down the law to even the stroppiest superstar, Pellegrini's going to have a job keeping a lid on the tizzy-fits.

I've said it before, this idea that you can just buy up the best players and they'll automatically fall into something resembling a bunch of world-beaters is hogwash. They'll need a Mourinho in there to lay down some rules too. Plus a Senna or a Mascherano to sit tight and do the dirty work.

No wonder Alex wasn't too bothered by the over-reaction in the Manchester derby towards the end of the season just gone by. He knew the Madeiran Mope was on his bike any road.
Cristiano Ronaldo
I imagine that as well as Ribery, United will be beefing up the midfield that was so easily out-passed in the Champs League final. If they can buy in an Arshavin or two I don't suppose the neutral will be complaining.

Whatever happens it's going to be one almighty bunfight amongst the rich clubs, and with Benitez's hands apparently tied by the ropy finances of Gillett and Hicks, it looks like there's going to be one major loser in the top flight this summer.

It would be nice to think Liverpool could spend very little and win the title but I doubt it somehow.

Meanwhile the cash carousel of Europe's elite carries on while the rest of us fans are just grateful that we've our local boozer's got a satellite subscription (and it's not Setanta).

In the pantheon of Premier League greats, Cristiano is right up there. Right up there with Zola, Bergkamp, Cantona, Shearer, Henry and of course, Emmanuel Pogatetz. In fact, if you can put to one side all the things we won't miss - the pleading, the plummeting, the ham acting - and look at him in terms of pure football, you have to say he's the best player to have graced the EPL.

He's not the nicest - Zola'd win that hands down - nor is he the fairest - and he may well be the one who looks most like a drag-queen with his wig off in between acts - but you'd have to say for the pace, trickery, aerial power and finishing, he is pound-for-pound the best of the lot. Which is not to say I haven't had enough of the lad.

Good luck in Madrid, CR. Your mum'll be chuffed to bits!


  • 1. At 12:41pm on 11 Jun 2009, Wolves Secret No18 wrote:

    First. Woo.

    Good blog Robbo. Ronaldo's really not given United the respect they deserve for giving him the tools for such a brilliant career. Then again United can't really say no to £80m, they can buy Silva, Villa and a midfield destroyer, and Bob's your uncle, they're in better shape than ever. Might just free up Rooney and Anderson to play in their proper positions as well.

    Good to see you pay a bit of tribute to Ronaldo though. He may be a tool, but he's a bloody brilliant tool. And his career's only going downhill from here!

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  • 2. At 12:44pm on 11 Jun 2009, orwellthedog wrote:

    And finally Robbo accepts that Ronaldo is indeed a very good player.
    Has that made you choke a little more than usual?

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  • 3. At 12:44pm on 11 Jun 2009, chippy23dec78 wrote:

    He'll miss his hair dryer.

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  • 4. At 12:44pm on 11 Jun 2009, gormo7 wrote:

    Have to agree there sammuthegreat, things can only go downhill for Ronaldo now. Messi is quite clearly the best in the world at the moment so he's already took a step backwards. Joining the 'bank of football' will be his downfall. Give it a few seasons and he'll be that bad he'll be playing for Bournemouth (no disrespect)

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  • 5. At 12:48pm on 11 Jun 2009, Malt Loaf wrote:

    Ronaldo is undoubtedly a great player, the best in the world at the moment, but unfortunately he seems to have believed it a little too much and that has meant he hasn't been as effective this year as last. He has given the impression that the United team revolves around him, and it doesn't. If he seriously thinks that his Real Madrid teammates will do the donkey work on his behalf so he can play pretty football then he has another thing coming. Look at how hard the United midfield have worked on his behalf the past few seasons, and look how much Rooney and Tevez have had to do the spadework on Ronaldo's behalf, and then try and tell me that Ronaldo would have had half the impact he's had.

    Don't get me wrong, Ronaldo is a class act. But grab the £80 million with both hands - one player does not a team make!

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  • 6. At 12:50pm on 11 Jun 2009, RedDevilsAdvocate wrote:

    Well, he has been a fantastic player for the last two or three seasons, but everyone knew he would go eventually

    He did have me convinced, for a little bit, that he might try one more season - all that 'this is my club' stuff in April and May - but I'm not greatly surprised, or upset, to see him go. £80m in the coffers certainly helps!

    Let's keep Tevez, sign up Silva/Ribeiry and Benzema/Villa and probably Valencia too and get our fourth title and third UCL final in a row while we are at it

    Oh, and thanks Cris for all those wonderful moments of skill, great longshots and freekicks, 42 goals in a season, and the trophies they helped to bring - I don't think you'll get as many in Madrid

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  • 7. At 12:58pm on 11 Jun 2009, kevthered83 wrote:

    Its not good that he's gone, but not the end of the world. With Ronaldo gone we can....

    Use the cash to sign Tevez....with Ronaldo gone we can promise him more first team footy.

    We should be able to get more use out of Rooney in a more forward role which will help England too.

    Sign Ribery!!!

    Dissapointed to see him go but am optimistic to see what we do in the summer to replace him.

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  • 8. At 1:01pm on 11 Jun 2009, KPR0211 wrote:

    For all those people doubting SAF and who think that it's the end of the road for Man Utd because of Ronaldo's move, I only have two names for you all: Zoran Tosic (09/10) and Adem Ljajic (10/11)!!

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  • 9. At 1:04pm on 11 Jun 2009, Y-I-1892man wrote:

    nice one Robbo-CR has done a lot for our game in the PL-love him or hate him,amongst the creme de la creme-SAF must be glad he did not accept 70m at the end of last season for 42 goals-this time round he only scored half as many but has put on another 10m in transfer money!BRILLIANT!Madrid will not get as much out of him than United did-fact!could not however fathom out how Pogatez ended up amongst the PL greats,if you had said Juninho-yes,but Pogatez-give me strength!!will let you off with it though-always enjoy your blogs-keep em coming.cya

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  • 10. At 1:12pm on 11 Jun 2009, TrueBlueNaija1 wrote:

    Now back to a level playing field at the Premier

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  • 11. At 1:21pm on 11 Jun 2009, RoyF41 wrote:

    Robbo, you disappoint me! You never mentioned the highlight of yesterday's game. I'm refering of course to the half time interview with Jim Greaves, who claimed that the remaining squad members from the 'Team of 66' could've turned Andorra over last night. Funniest bit of TV I've watched in months. I don't seem to be getting that warm glowing feeling others are getting about South Africa 2010. Maybe it's because our best player was good old reliable Mr Beckham!

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  • 12. At 1:31pm on 11 Jun 2009, secondCrimson wrote:

    Its funny how no one complains that Real are 'ruining football' like the complaints levelled at Man City every time they make a move in the transfer window...

    As much as I dislike him as a person, the spark he had will defiantly be missed.

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  • 13. At 1:35pm on 11 Jun 2009, Alien Mr T wrote:






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  • 14. At 1:41pm on 11 Jun 2009, Teiam - problem solved wrote:

    It is a sad day for football and as a United fan i'm a bit gutted but i've known it's been coming and now I can look to the future with a bit more enjoyment, winning the EPL and Champions League I was hoping for a summer of relaxing and enjoying the football, instead it was all about Ronaldo leaving and I didn't enjoy the celebrations of our achievement, now he's gone, the future seems alot more stable and cannot wait to see who we bring in!

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  • 15. At 1:44pm on 11 Jun 2009, Reddest_of_Devils wrote:

    Another fun and entertaining blog Robbo. And this just goes to show that the Season's Over Disorder you feared suffering in your previous blog can always be remedied by the summer transfer activity! Real Madrid spending £140million in a few days is likely just the start of it, with the Abu Dabi group no doubt planning on buying lots of new faces for Man City fans to drool over, and Abramovich bank-rolling Ancelotti to bring some of AC Milan's starts over here. Plus United now having close to £100m themselves to spend, I wouldn't get too hasty with that diagnosis just yet!

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  • 16. At 1:58pm on 11 Jun 2009, SeanieGilbo wrote:

    I know it would only be a matter of time from when the story broke the Gelled Tumbler was off till Robbo dusted off his laptop and got to work.

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  • 17. At 1:58pm on 11 Jun 2009, jonnothecitizen wrote:

    2. At 12:44pm on 11 Jun 2009, orwellthedog wrote:
    And finally Robbo accepts that Ronaldo is indeed a very good player.
    Has that made you choke a little more than usual?

    Orwellthedog, Robbo has said many a time before that Ronaldo is a good player. There are very few fans or armchair managers alike that would say Ronaldo isnt. Personally, he is the moost complete and therefore best player in the world for me, and Im a City fan.

    However, Robbo, like every non Man United fan, cant stand Ronaldo when he does play. The skills are impressive, him spending 80 minutes on his ass cus a bigger boy defender got within 5 foot of him every game is not.

    Kind of a shame Zidane doesnt play anymore, would of been hilarious to watch him nut Ronaldo one in training.

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  • 18. At 1:59pm on 11 Jun 2009, RedBlueArmy92 wrote:

    Robbo, fine work again sir.

    Cant help but agree with you on England, when they get a bit comfy and try to pull out "the skills"... It's a bit like watching an under 10s team play the under 7s...

    As for CR7 (?), equal measures of joy and despair. As a league the EPL will undoubtedly be losing one of its finest talents, truly one of the greatest to have graced the pitches of our countries top flight. he will be missed... But on the other hand not having to see his greasy little mug until the champions league rolls around next, gives me an enormous amount of pleasure. Even with out his fairy like theatrics he still has a face made for hatred and punching... Some people just do.

    But it has been on the cards for ages that he would go, and once Aldershot were unable to reach an agreement regarding his personal terms, someone like Real was bound to get in their...

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  • 19. At 2:00pm on 11 Jun 2009, Cropper wrote:

    Hata la vista?

    Firstly, it's hasta la vista, and secondly, in spain you will never hear anyone say this, Robbo. More like "hasta luego".

    Madrid will be an incredible attacking force.

    I hope Man Utd spend this money wisely.

    IN: Ribery, Benzema, Glen Johnson and Valencia

    OUT: Nani, Neville (hope Neville can do some coaching at the club).

    LOAN OUT: Wellbeck, Marcheda

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  • 20. At 2:08pm on 11 Jun 2009, DenistheGenius wrote:

    #9 - might want to check your irony meter. Robbinho wasn't exactly shooting for subtlety with the Pogatetz remark!

    i must say, Robbo - you may have allowed yourself to become "prisoner of the moment" in proclaiming the Gelled Pouter the greatest Premiership player ever. perhaps he had the greatest single season, but for his career, i can't see him edging the consistently brilliant runs of any of your list, plus Giggs and Philipe Senderos.

    ok, now i've had my fun with that last one, which should've instantly destroyed everyone's irony meter!

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  • 21. At 2:12pm on 11 Jun 2009, WeeeRob wrote:

    @Mr_Twilight wrote: "Ronaldo is undoubtedly a great player, the best in the world at the moment, but unfortunately he seems to have believed it a little too much and that has meant he hasn't been as effective this year as last. "

    With Berbatov arriving Ronaldo stayed on the wing more which is why you probably don't think he's been as effective this year.

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  • 22. At 2:13pm on 11 Jun 2009, jay842 wrote:

    Aaaah Robbo so you are capable of writing a blog that doesn't attack Chelsea!!!!

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  • 23. At 2:16pm on 11 Jun 2009, Xavierneville wrote:


    You're on firm ground now, less of the Tennis chat and getting digging for more obscure footy banter, that's were your strength lies.....

    On England, lots of greddy players there last night, Gerrard and cole in particular. choice of Beckham against limited oppo was a good one because Lamps and Gerrard just go don the middle everytime.

    despite been quite tricky both Young and walcott were shown how to cross a ball by Glen Johnson, how embarrassing for them

    On Ronaldo, Madrid destined to play Utd in the ECL, the boffins at Uefa are fixing it as we speak.......

    I'll miss tow things, the free kicks and the heading, both down to him and him alone. Everything else was beset by immature personality and desire to be like Cantona, but hey CR try being yourself and not some searly frenchy and you may still win a place in the hearts of the football world

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  • 24. At 2:20pm on 11 Jun 2009, Gladius157 wrote:

    Nah, come on now boys... he wasn't as good as Thierry. Ronaldo the 2nd best... over Zola, Bergkamp, Beckham, Shearer, Owen (in no particular order)... but not as good as Henry; either on skills or as a man.

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  • 25. At 2:21pm on 11 Jun 2009, whopawho wrote:

    keep moving ~
    You are the best

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  • 26. At 2:23pm on 11 Jun 2009, Boroboyrob wrote:

    Great Blog
    The Gelled Tumbler is no more.
    Maybe SAF could now buy the barcodes as a feeder club!!

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  • 27. At 2:26pm on 11 Jun 2009, Malt Loaf wrote:


    Fair point about Ronaldo playing more on the wing this year, and I accept that is a reason why he might have not appeared to be so effective, but it's fair to say that he has let everyone know he hasn't been happy with it as well both in terms of his performances (lazy at times) and petulance. A bit of rejigging and I'm sure he won't be missed as much as he would like to think he'd be, and as much as some fans think he will. I'm certain Rooney will step up to the plate a bit more, and I think from Rooney's point of view this could be the best thing that could have happened to him.

    In short, I'll stick my neck out and say Ronaldo won't be missed.

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  • 28. At 2:35pm on 11 Jun 2009, phil wrote:

    Ronnie not a patch on last year when he obviously wanted to play for us. Madrid need him more than we do, hence the £80m - their way off the top slot in their own country let alone in Europe. Who was United's big miss in the CL final? Why the much-maligned Darren Fletcher! Bye Bye Ronnie, enjoy the adoration in Spain - just hope SAF spends the windfall wisely..

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  • 29. At 2:36pm on 11 Jun 2009, bertrandmcnally wrote:

    I'll bet Robinho is kicking himself today.

    Kaka was in top form last night for Brazil against Paraguay, giving everybody, especially Robinho, many chances to win that game by more than just one goal.

    So Lassana Diarra will be Real's Mascherano? I can see it, he's pretty good. What do they do with all the extra bits of Orange littering the place?

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  • 30. At 2:51pm on 11 Jun 2009, cleopatrakleo wrote:

    To say Ronaldo's career is downhill from here is nonsense. He's won everything he could for Manchester United and now he's off to revitalise Real and get them back to being European greats again, just as he did with Man Utd. It's a great deal for all parties concerned.

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  • 31. At 2:52pm on 11 Jun 2009, TommyO wrote:

    I hear United have already lined up Tom Daley as Ronaldo's replacement

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  • 32. At 2:56pm on 11 Jun 2009, b223dy wrote:

    Its a pity for peple to give SAF all the notions that he is responsible for Ronaldos success and how he knows when to sell players when they are past their prime.
    Is he not the same man that said he will never deal with the mob (Madrid)?
    Also, is he the one that spotted the talent of Ronaldo? You all seem to 4get so quickly that it was the senior players (Keane, Giggs, Neville) that persuaded SAF to purchase Ronaldo, after the infamous friendly match against Sporting Lisbon. SAF did not see the talent, the players did, so all credit should not be given to SAF on Ronaldos case. Rather SAF should be thankful to him for getting back ManU into winning ways. SAF may have the technical knowledge, but the 11 men on the pitch have to do their job to make anything work. Ronaldo did this for SAF, as the likes of Rooney (people talk aboout over rated players!!), Forlan, Berbatov, Saha, Park, Smith....never made the cut for SAF & ManU. Ronaldo gave SAF options which he cant get from any other of his present squad. Its solely because of Ronaldo that made him say that this is the best quad he has ever had. Robbo is bloggers like you that twist the truth for the unsuspecting fans

    Good luck to him, as it has always been his dream to play for Madrid and not ManU. We all know it, so fans of ManU and EPL should thank him for his contribution to English football. He brought the World Footballer prize to England in this modern era, know other present footballer in England can do this.

    PS this is from a non Ronaldo fan

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  • 33. At 3:00pm on 11 Jun 2009, FanOfRealFootball wrote:

    Read these Robbo blogs from time to time, each time I get the feeling the content is pretty weak.

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  • 34. At 3:00pm on 11 Jun 2009, Matt - Keith Lambs No1 fan wrote:

    The remark about Pogatetz being a PL great certainly had me laughing Robbo, nice one.

    I will not be remotely sad to see the "gelled tumbler" (Copyright Mr D Robson Esq) leave for pastures new. He may have a great talent, but the attitude & more importantly his well publicised balance problems, are something that I will personally be glad to see the back of !!

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  • 35. At 3:03pm on 11 Jun 2009, DenistheGenius wrote:

    #32 - "it was the senior players (Keane, Giggs, Neville) that persuaded SAF to purchase Ronaldo, after the infamous friendly match against Sporting Lisbon. SAF did not see the talent, the players did, so all credit should not be given to SAF"

    interesting point, if at all true...can anyone verify this?

    Sir Appley Cheeks is untouchable - i'm sure he'll turn around his "never deal with that mob" quote with some cunning PR magic.

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  • 36. At 3:03pm on 11 Jun 2009, messiforrangers wrote:

    The EPL cannot now be called the best league in the world because of the fact that out of the top ten players in the world the premier probably only has one or two whereas spain have seven or eight

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  • 37. At 3:09pm on 11 Jun 2009, 21shergar wrote:

    Ronaldo is the only footballer ever to have suffered from the bends - because he spends so much time diving.

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  • 38. At 3:16pm on 11 Jun 2009, RedDevilsAdvocate wrote:

    @ 32 and 35

    The Lisbon friendly story is perhaps a little exaggerated - although Sporting are not a 'feeder club' to United in the same sense as, say, Royal Antwerp, they still have a close working relationship that led to us signing Ronaldo and then Nani

    While there is no doubt that Ronaldo's performance in that friendly brought him to the attention of United's players, there can also be little doubt that Ferguson or his scouting team knew about him already - and I believe Sir Alex has said something along the lines of 'after that performance we knew that we wouldn't leave the place until we had agreed his transfer'

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  • 39. At 3:17pm on 11 Jun 2009, messiforrangers wrote:

    I have just read bdyke04's comment and it is good to see another person who thinks rooney is completely over rated. Just compare rooneys progression over the last couple of years to ronaldo's. I believe that the only truly world class player england have (and by world class i mean in the top ten or so players in the world) is steven gerard. This is the view of many people outside of england.

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  • 40. At 3:22pm on 11 Jun 2009, Sportirade wrote:

    Just as a hypothetical exercise - what would be the Liverpool board decision be if Man Utd were to offer £50 million to Liverpool for Stevie G - still with enough left over to secure young Tevez with 5 million chump change left over to sign the best player in any club in any country formally in the communist block.

    What do you think

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  • 41. At 3:23pm on 11 Jun 2009, The Y wrote:

    I'm looking forwrd to Man U fans now getting as irritated with his diving antics as the rest of us do anyway...

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  • 42. At 3:27pm on 11 Jun 2009, WhitleyBayWonTheVase wrote:

    Whilst I am sure Ribery is a name Ferguson knows well, I don't see him being the player he wants to sign.

    Benzema is the man that Ferguson most admires and who certainly holds most long term potential. Put him alongside Tevez, Rooney and lazy-fella, and the Man United fans will have forgotten who Ronaldo was within 12 months.

    Brilliant though he was, and most certainly the best player to have graced the league (I agree with you on that), he was also one of the most disloyal and childlike footballers and I'm amazed SAF put up with him for so long.

    Beckham, Van Nistelrooy, Schmeichel, Hughes, Robson (the real one, not you), Keane et al - we've all sat and watched them move on and think that we might see United go into decline. Then what happens? We all sit and think we wish he was our clubs manager a few years later when they're sweeping the board again.

    Ronaldo has gone because United don't need him. You can bank on that as much as the 80 squillion.

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  • 43. At 3:30pm on 11 Jun 2009, Bellypork wrote:

    Good read as usual Robbo. Bit of s shrewd move by SAF if you ask me as I think the lad had too many negative vibes (months of sulking after he was refused a transfer last time round) around him this season and was starting to become a liability.

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  • 44. At 3:30pm on 11 Jun 2009, mambo wrote:

    Bye bye rollin Ron, have a good life, could you take Drogba and Gerrard with yer.....

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  • 45. At 3:50pm on 11 Jun 2009, lightother1 wrote:

    the writing has been on the wall for Ronaldo at UTD for a while! in fact someone close to the club told me last year, he was staying for one more season then was going, end of! 80 million is a lot, UTD could have Arteta off us, for say £55 million.... plus hargreaves and Carrick!!!!

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  • 46. At 3:52pm on 11 Jun 2009, kingrgs78 wrote:

    "31. At 2:52pm on 11 Jun 2009, TommyOnion wrote:
    I hear United have already lined up Tom Daley as Ronaldo's replacement"


    HaHahahahahaha - Jesus I laughed out so loudly in the office, everyone's looking at me :-) Can't stop laughing....Good one mate, good one! Although, young Tom's still got a lot to learn in the art of fine diving! I hear he's in secret talks with Ronnie for a few pointers!

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  • 47. At 3:53pm on 11 Jun 2009, 2 of 3 wrote:

    Right after the Manchester Derby, I knew Ronalo was going to be sold. No player shows dissent to Ferguson so openly and stays at Man U.
    So the deal was already written in pencil back then . . .

    The problem with putting "Andorra, San Marino, Liechtenstein and the Footballing Goats of Skiathos" in their own group is that whoever won it would qualify for the World Cup. Yikes!

    I do feel sorry for thos countries as the only competitive football they ever get to play, is in situation where they couldn't possibly win.

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  • 48. At 4:01pm on 11 Jun 2009, ormrodblue76 wrote:

    We will now see just how much a one man team ManUre are, The gelled tumbler will fit right in Spain the diving in La Liga is the best in the world.

    ManUre to finish 4th next season

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  • 49. At 4:07pm on 11 Jun 2009, IanH wrote:

    His value was only likely to diminish. Excellent work from United.

    I loved Ronaldo's goals but not his sulks. Make Rooney the main man and bring in a winger who wants to be there.

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  • 50. At 4:07pm on 11 Jun 2009, randalthor1812 wrote:

    Who else thinks that there is no-way that the 80 Million will be spent , more like half will be servicing the debt ,which still leaves about 40 mill ...Tevez and one half decent defender and thats your lot .Here's hoping they finish lower than boro about 4th will do.

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  • 51. At 4:17pm on 11 Jun 2009, RedBlueArmy92 wrote:

    47: I think you'd have them all in a group to qualify for the qualifiers as it were...

    And yes TommyOnion, your Tom Daley comment was superb!

    Also loving Man Utd fans put the positive spins on this in regards to The Ferg-man, & fair play to you... Though it does appear that all through last season and especially when it looked like Ron was staying... Fergo was a genius for building his team around Ronaldo, him and Ron shaping the winning formula like a twisted parody of the clay scene from Ghost... And now he has gone, old beetroot's a shrewd player of the market who gets players to their maximum potential before selling on for a tasty profit, he's sitting prettier than a winning team leader from the apprentice, thats not only won the task but has had Margret play footsy with him all through Sugar's praise... Old Sir Alex is a man that can't do any wrong in the eyes of the Old Trafford faithful!

    But we'll see what happens, will the Yanks pay their debts and leave Fergie only the 30mil as agreed(enough to buy my club 60 times over!) ... Or will they go on a super market sweep style raid of the world leagues buying up players like a fat kid with extra pocket money in sweet shop? Who knows but Ill wager what ever happens, Fergie comes out smelling like roses... (anything to mask the whiskey ay!)

    Aldershot for cup...

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  • 52. At 4:20pm on 11 Jun 2009, LORDSAF wrote:

    Why do the majority of posters assume United have got anything between £80 to £111m to spend on new players?
    There's an ever increasing debt to pay off as well as instalments to be met for Hargreaves, Berbatov et al.
    Fergie will be lucky to set a quarter of it to spend.

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  • 53. At 4:30pm on 11 Jun 2009, kbains86 wrote:

    Ronaldo is leaving, obviously so he can become the most expensive player in the world, which im sure would give his modest ego a boost.

    I also believe he is leaving because he does not get enough protection from referees which i believe is true. He gets hacked down every game by dirty tackles from players such as Emmanuel Pogatetz (He's really bad ROBBO SORRY, even you would have to admit he puts some wreckless challenges in i.e possebon!!) (and i could name many more)........... these types of players r cowards!!

    Im sure you all play football so after 38 premier league games and say 10-15 cup games (domestic/european) your looking at around 50 games of dirty tackling.... That would take its toll on any1.Players cant stop him so they foul him rather than let him do something brilliant.

    Get rid of the thugs and cowards in football I say.... there is no room 4 them!!

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  • 54. At 4:31pm on 11 Jun 2009, reillster wrote:

    Admittedly, the transfer budget will not be the full £80million, but with the off-loading of fringe players like Campbell, Gibson (thankfully as he was very poor in my humble opinion) & a few others, then The Wizard will have quite a hefty war chest available.
    Can't see Ribery coming to Utd though, or any other EPL team for that matter but who knows for sure?
    I'm looking forward to seeing who The Wizard decides to bring in & I hope he is able to keep Tevez so we can win the league one more time to go clear of the Mickey Mousers

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  • 55. At 4:43pm on 11 Jun 2009, Xavierneville wrote:

    Rooney overated?

    Not so sure about that....the only reason it appears is because is temperment is soft. Play Rooney up front week in week out and tell him you only want goals then that's what you'll get. Rooney was weak for accepting to play deep or in midfield. Ronaldo made it clear he is a forward and a part time winger, hence the goals and development.

    Rooney is not overated just soft in the head for not being selfish enough not something you could ever accuse CR of.......

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  • 56. At 4:49pm on 11 Jun 2009, Malt Loaf wrote:

    Fully agreed Xaviewneville. I doubt Kaka will be so self-sacrificing when he plays with Ronaldo.

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  • 57. At 5:02pm on 11 Jun 2009, Marvin4England wrote:

    Am I the only person in the country who remembers Andorra getting to 0-0 at half time in their last two home games?

    Luxembourg beat Belarus this year, and the Faroes drew with Austria.

    I think a bit more respect should be afforded to smaller nations who punch above their weight. We win 7 and think we have a right to decide who should be allowed to play us?

    What next - criticising a referre because he comes from the wrong country?

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  • 58. At 5:03pm on 11 Jun 2009, Marvin4England wrote:

    Edit above. Last two home games against England!

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  • 59. At 5:03pm on 11 Jun 2009, alwaysindoubt wrote:

    Good bit of business for Man Utd. I'm glad it has happened so quickly as well, at least we don't have to suffer another summer of tedious rumours.

    Have to agree with #11 Robbo. How can you mention the Andorra game without Greavsie's hilarious interview? Priceless.

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  • 60. At 5:13pm on 11 Jun 2009, U11947716 wrote:

    Can the BBC not afford an expert, or at least funnier, columnist that Robbo?

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  • 61. At 5:15pm on 11 Jun 2009, Malt Loaf wrote:

    If United can find another £20 million then they can buy Newcastle.

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  • 62. At 5:31pm on 11 Jun 2009, Theo Logical wrote:

    you have to say he's the best player to have graced the EPL.

    EPL?? Robbo, you're not going the yank way too, are you? What will it be next? You sporting a "Go Team GB" T-shirt?

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  • 63. At 5:46pm on 11 Jun 2009, Spitfire wrote:

    Aint that Alex bloke a genius.

    Some love others hate em, but like Murinho, EPL is at a loss without the designated diver. It is indeed a gift when a team sport could be reduced to what one individual is capable of.

    But who am I gonna laugh at when he does not get what he wants?

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  • 64. At 5:59pm on 11 Jun 2009, Neal Richardson wrote:

    RVN. Ronaldo. Beckham. SAR knows exactly when a player has reached his sell-by date.

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  • 65. At 6:17pm on 11 Jun 2009, rush-onenil wrote:

    17 Nov 1993. I'm stuck in bed with proper man flu, so summon up the energy to pop the telly on and watch england v's san marino. now i'm as proud of the three lions as any englishman, but the san mario dance through the static english midfield and defence to score after 8 second, had me rolling on the floor with laughter and almost instantly cured my runny nose and aching limbs. we need the minows 'cos every now and then they throw up a gem, or in the case of the faroe islands, every time they play scotland.

    as for christiano? can't wait for the reds to draw RM in the Champs League

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  • 66. At 6:20pm on 11 Jun 2009, Chris Wilby wrote:

    As an Englishman, I'm quite used to blogs such as the above. However, as I have been living in Holland for the past 10 years, I have been watching the Dutch league as well and I can guarantee you that the vast majority of Dutch football fans would be absolutely flabbergasted by this blog! The Dutch are in complete mourning if a player like Robben leaves and they're preparing for Afelay's flight to Spain with a grand feeling of sadness. Robbo, I really enjoy your blogs, mate, but don't be happy about the best players in the world leaving the PL.

    Just in case all you guys and gals in England were wondering, there are some brilliant up and coming players in Holland, Aisatti from Ajax, Dembele who plays at AZ, Stijn Schaars also from AZ, van de Wiel from Ajax, de Guzman at Feijenoord, van Wolfswinkel at Utrecht, Elia at Twente and plenty more!

    Proud to be English, but there's more talent in Holland! !(#@%!(#*%(!#$*%

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  • 67. At 6:27pm on 11 Jun 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    That was a timely announcement Robbo, did they break the news to suit your blog deadline? There seems to be a suggestion that this was planned a loooooong time ago!

    Any road up, 80m is good business for Man U and good riddance to the crying, whinging SOD. Yes, it's been a pleasure to watch but he can get tiresome with his antics and you can bet your season ticket to the Bluebell that other key members of the squad will be happy he's gone.

    As for Rooney, I agree that he deserves his chance leading the line and I admire him for his patience but recall that Bobby Charlton spent a donkey's age on the left wing and wherever else Busby needed him. Rooney has done nothing but show what a team player he is. That's the big difference between him (others too) and Ronaldo. With Ronaldo it's all about Ronaldo. The legends of Manchester United or any other club, put their team first, even Besty who had unrivalled individual talent (way beyond CR's) was United through and through. I get the sense that Rooney is the same way. It's that passion that (true) supporters show up to see at clubs of all sizes. That's what turns us from nippers into lifers.

    Hopefully he'll be a better designated diver now that he's back on the other side of the road. Just be cautious of any adverts for a used right hand drive Ferrari.

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  • 68. At 6:52pm on 11 Jun 2009, lobotics wrote:

    Good blog, I fully agree. Plus now I guess you'll stop with the "gelled tumbler" thing - it got a bit old after the 400th time.

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  • 69. At 7:29pm on 11 Jun 2009, NEARPOSTHEADER wrote:

    Shock horror! Ronaldo is off to Surreal Madrid - well, they had to; even Real would balk at paying someone 26m quid for nowt.

    Many seem to think Ribery will be on his way to the ToD - I wouldn't bank on that. He's already said he doesn't like the weather in the UK - and that obviously must take precedence over any footballing decision. Viila, too, has expressed a desire to stay in Spain.

    If Man U really need someone to play out on the left wing, why not go for Ashley Young?

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  • 70. At 7:36pm on 11 Jun 2009, diggsgiggs wrote:

    There was a footballer, Ronaldo
    Upon the ground he would frequently sprawl-do
    Along came Madrid,
    Sayonara he bid
    But in two years they all said "now where's Waldo?"

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  • 71. At 7:57pm on 11 Jun 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    #69're spot on with that and although Ribery might actually be ok with the climate on the South coast, Southampton/Portsmouth/Torquay etc. might not be a good fit on the footie and financial front. Manchester being the wettest City in Britain can't give 'em much hope but if it was me, for 8 million a year every day would seem like a sunny day, could they throw in a Grand Prix style brolly babe?

    Any road up, with this development will CR now be free to act as spokesperson for the Phil Brown range of skin care products in all of Spain?

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  • 72. At 8:19pm on 11 Jun 2009, Spitfire wrote:

    #71. Now why would you try to make life more miserable for Messieurs Ribery, who already is terrified of rain? The bloke is married to an Afghan lass and the brolly babe, as suggested, wont go down well in the good scheme of things.

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  • 73. At 8:31pm on 11 Jun 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 74. At 8:44pm on 11 Jun 2009, aconlon wrote:

    You forgot to mention Bayerns chairman has stated that they wont sell Ribery for less than 150M

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  • 75. At 8:47pm on 11 Jun 2009, Spitfire wrote:

    #73.Not sure where you are going with that camel, mate. I hope you are not one of those who struggle to tell your Afghanistans apart from your Iraqs.
    I happen to know for sure that the afghan girls are as much proficient in handling an AK as they are beautiful.

    All I am saying is, we are not ready to loose Ribery just yet.

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  • 76. At 9:00pm on 11 Jun 2009, 21shergar wrote:

    Very amusing, Nearpostheader. Reminds me of the old joke:
    Q. What's the score?
    A. Real Madrid 1 Surreal Madrid Fish
    Only now £156m for two players has moved the surrealism goalposts.
    The only thing Real Madrid needs to do now is to change Santiago Bernabeu stadium into a great big swimming pool to accommodate CR's diving. Apparently he refused to move to Madrid unless a set of complimentary scuba gear was included in the contract.

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  • 77. At 9:15pm on 11 Jun 2009, collie21 wrote:

    what will you write about next season? No jellied eels at boro or jelled tumbling at United, it will have to be the jelly fish at the pool I suppose.

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  • 78. At 9:15pm on 11 Jun 2009, G_is_God wrote:

    #32 - "it was the senior players (Keane, Giggs, Neville) that persuaded SAF to purchase Ronaldo, after the infamous friendly match against Sporting Lisbon. SAF did not see the talent, the players did, so all credit should not be given to SAF"

    "interesting point, if at all true...can anyone verify this?"

    How would you like this verified, a signed and stamped document?
    Ronaldo also almost signed for Arsenal, and he was offered to Liverpool before that too. SO SAF did not exactly pluck him at a tender age from a sunday footy team on one of his wine tasting trips to Portugal did he..

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  • 79. At 9:32pm on 11 Jun 2009, WhitleyBayWonTheVase wrote:

    I'm telling you all, forget Ribery. The man Fergy will go for is Karim Benzema.

    To begin with he is much more of a complete player than Ribery. Secondly, it is now recognised that he feels ready to move. A couple of years ago he said he wanted to mature a little more - and that sign of maturity in thinking will also appeal to Ferguson.

    Then, Lyon will take between 24-28m. That is a hell of a price for a hell of a player. Benzema has been the shining star of Lyon for years now and if you provide him with the support United could do - you have a future world player of the year on your hands.

    Don't be surprised to see SAF decide to make a bold bid for Xavi or Iniesta either - that is a real possibility.

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  • 80. At 10:51pm on 11 Jun 2009, Ginger wrote:

    Re; The signing of Ron - at the time of the game it was said that he would be signing in 12 months but that was brought forward following a plea from the senior players. This is what I know but it isn't verified.

    The team will now play without Ron being the main focus. United's strength in the past is that the team have been the threat.

    Thanks for the memories Ron but it is time that you and Utd moved on, it's for the best.

    I do hope that we can secure Ribery, Benzema & Valencia, that would do nicely.

    Lets make it four on the trot!

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  • 81. At 11:01pm on 11 Jun 2009, Reddest_of_Devils wrote:

    No. 35, here's your proof:

    Ferguson added: "After we played Sporting last week the lads in the dressing room talked about him constantly, and on the plane back from the game they urged me to sign him - that's how highly they rated him.


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  • 82. At 11:11pm on 11 Jun 2009, TrotterUSA wrote:

    #75 Well, I was referred to the moderator, not sure why but anyway, I thought a brolly babe might go down quite nicely, he wouldn't notice the rain. Perhaps it was the one hump or two comment? Hmmm, perhaps they'll let me know by morning. Squad number 47 should be available. Alan Kennedy should have had that one! Any other AK's?

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  • 83. At 00:03am on 12 Jun 2009, olympicgoat wrote:

    I'll be very surprised if Ribery goes anywhere in summer. He's stated that he's happy at Bayern, and Bayern have repeatedly stated that he's not going anywhere - in fact they put a pricetag of over 100m Euros on him not so long ago, if I don't remember right. They don't really need the money and Ribery seems happy to stay, so I can't see what would make them sell him.

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  • 84. At 02:15am on 12 Jun 2009, Simon_CTFC wrote:

    As a neutral to the Premier League, it will be a shame to see him go. Not only did he bring fantastic talent to the table, but there was always some kind of controversy with him if his step-overs didn't entertain you enough; diving, winking, dreaming of playing in white...

    Utd have done well to get £80 million for him, as I got the feeling Ronaldo started to think he was bigger than the team. We've seen this happen at Old Trafford before, and when the player leaves, a new one or two is brought in, the team is rejigged, and they go on to a fantastic season. If Utd do not win the PL next season, it won't be because Ronaldo left. One man does not make the team, even if he happens to be the best in the world.

    It will be interesting to see how Real Madrid perform next season. Their purchasing, if the last few days can be a sign of things to come, suggests they are going for the 'We're going to score more than you' approach, and with the team they are putting together, you wouldn't bet against them. A stronger challenge for the La Liga title is the least they should achieve.

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  • 85. At 05:18am on 12 Jun 2009, flyingfireballxl5 wrote:

    utd should go out and buy messi.
    now watch rooney become world class.
    world player of the year will be an
    english men in 2010. top scorer in the
    world cup will be rooney with 12 goals
    england v brazil final 3-2.
    i must have been dreaming

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  • 86. At 08:35am on 12 Jun 2009, Robbing_Hoody wrote:

    Glad he is gone. Easily Utd's best player and most goals come from him. They'll win nothing without him- that's not to say they are a one man team though. It's just that Cristine really is that good, irreplaceable in fact.

    People talk about Ribery but he has only got into double figures three times in his career, never scored more than 20 goals and is unproven in a top league. Ditto Benzema, Valencia, etc.

    They will be lost without him despite the money. Be a tight league next season but just cannot see Utd winning it without him.

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  • 87. At 08:57am on 12 Jun 2009, chiangmaiblue wrote:

    It's probably the best thing that could have happened for United, Ronaldo was becoming too much of a one-man-band and not a team player. The final of the Champions League was a great example of him thinking he was going to win the game on his own and ultimately failing.

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  • 88. At 09:48am on 12 Jun 2009, spurelgreco wrote:

    I think you will find the "Footballing Goats of Skiathos" won the EURO in 2004.

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  • 89. At 09:51am on 12 Jun 2009, palace_mark wrote:

    Ronaldo for £80m?
    Fair play if you have the backing
    We at palace will be lucky to be given 80p to fund our team this summer!
    The gelled tumbler was good for the premier league, imagine how many full backs have trained harder, just to stand a chance of keeping him quiet!! Shouldbe interesting to see who SAF brings in during the summer, although all this talk about ribery? I cant see it happening!
    Away from all of this tumbler chat now, because the best comment on this blog belongs to post 11!!!
    Jimmy Greaves was hilarious on Wednesday night. The genuine confusion as to who Andorra were, and how terrible they are! And the fact that the old boys could beat them even today!

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  • 90. At 10:04am on 12 Jun 2009, JonnyC11 wrote:

    CR7 has obviously left because he is afraid of having to play against George Elokobi next season.

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  • 91. At 10:06am on 12 Jun 2009, gnuchu wrote:

    "Mediterranean mope" - come on Robbo, you're slipping. He's from Portugal which is on the Atlantic...

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  • 92. At 10:22am on 12 Jun 2009, ayresomeparker wrote:

    Hmm... for what it's worth, I've felt all along that the truly great players (Pele, Cruyff, Beckenbauer, Platini, Maldini, Messi etc.) play for the TEAM, as do the merely darned good (Moore, Socrates, Magath, even Gerrard etc.), whereas the talented poseurs (there have been many but Cristiano Ronaldo is close to the top of the list!) play for THEMSELVES! I think that this is a serious consideration when discussing the merits of particular players and would be interested to hear what the learned public thinks!

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  • 93. At 10:26am on 12 Jun 2009, hatyaidanny wrote:

    i'M a red and I'm happy. At least now I can join everyone else in the world and call Ronaldo a ####

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  • 94. At 10:32am on 12 Jun 2009, Macca wrote:

    This is great for Utd. They get 80 mil for a player that doesn't want to be there. No matter how good he is, if he doesn't want to play for the team then why force him to stay?

    When players play for money and not for the club then it's survival of the richest. It won't matter how "great" your club is or how "big" they are, if they don't have the cash they will fall behind in the pecking order.

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  • 95. At 10:39am on 12 Jun 2009, ExPat Smoggie wrote:

    From his recent displays it was clear that the Madeiran Moper's heart was no longer with his club and irrespective of his undoubted talent, I can't imagine SAF wanting anyone in the dressing room that doesn't really want to be there. So, 80m quid seems a good price for someone who you know would have to be moved on sooner or later. I'm sure all SAF's talk of "Not even a virus" was just a way to squeeze an extra few million out of Madrid.

    But what to do with the money? Benzema seems a good bet, but doubt the quality of Ribbery. Even setting aside his fear of raindrops, to shine in the Bundesliga doesn't take much. Somehow, I can't see him excelling in the Prem.

    Good blog as ever Robbo and have a beer in the Bluebell for me. It's been over 25 years since I last popped in for a swift'un.

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  • 96. At 11:07am on 12 Jun 2009, lorus59 wrote:


    Yes, you must be dreaming. It will take a hell of a team to get past Spain (not Brazil) in next year's World Cup.

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  • 97. At 11:29am on 12 Jun 2009, HeartBreakKhid* wrote:

    About time a player of his calibre is about to play in the best league in the world, La Liga. What a way for the Spanish Royal Family to respond to Barca's Treble. Kaka, Ronaldo, Who's next?

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  • 98. At 12:05pm on 12 Jun 2009, WhitleyBayWonTheVase wrote:

    What's all this nonsense about La Liga being the best in the world?

    When you support teams that only get on the telly when they win a final that no-one else knows is being played is when you take a lot of pleasure in watching any level of league football - especially Premiership football.

    The English premier league is miles ahead of La Liga. It makes no difference whatsoever that Madrid bank roll Kaka, Ronaldo and whomever else into their league. The overall standard of the teams and the quality of play in La Liga is still well below that of the Premier League.

    Since Barcelona beat Manchester United in the final it would appear that the death knoll of supremacy is being called. Why? Barca won fair and square but we all know that United had their worst game of the season - at the worst possible time. I don't wish to diminish Barca's achievement because they are a great club, but if you think their win and Real Madrids signings make La Liga the League of Choice - you're much mistaken.

    You would pit the Premier League against La Liga, team for team, every week and the English clubs would win 75% of the time. The overall quality is pants by comparison.

    All this Galactico clap-trap has been tried and failed. It'll fail again. Ronaldo will play for Ronaldo and spend most of his time wondering why the hell he listened to his Mum. Hes taken a step down in club and thats a fact.

    You can have the 10 best players in the world in your league but it doesn't account for the other 200+ average players. The Premiership is still the world beater.

    On another note, why don't some people learn? All these doom and gloom (rival optimists I suspect) prophets saying that United have been a one man team and will now go into decline. They'll be nowhere to be seen in a years time when SAF embarks on a trophy parade of the Premiership and Champions League - because if you seriously think that isn't a distinct possibility then you don't know football and you simply hope history doesn't repeat itself. Check your history books - this what Ferguson does better than anyone on the planet.

    Anyway, hes going to manage Whitley Bay next year. I may as well spout as much crap as some of the others on here.

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  • 99. At 12:24pm on 12 Jun 2009, mark harrison wrote:

    Should United get the upper hand by bidding £81 million for Messi? I wonder how Ronaldo and Real (never mind Barca) would react?

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  • 100. At 12:44pm on 12 Jun 2009, afcblegend wrote:

    In response to post #4, I would welcome him with open arms to Bournemouth, but somehow I don't think that will happen...

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  • 101. At 12:56pm on 12 Jun 2009, HeartBreakKhid* wrote:

    La Liga is the best league in the world, non-stop attacking football, the premier league is all about defending, the EPL it's over rated, Take the tinted specs off and have a real good look.

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  • 102. At 1:04pm on 12 Jun 2009, Chippelsea wrote:

    Good point about meaningless internationals.

    Had to laugh at Platini, moaning constantly about EPL and then Real Madrid cough up the biggest outlay ever in a week. Makes his favouritism look skewed.

    Ranaldo's an excellent player and will be missed, however, not by me. Whilst I found his skill fascinating and unquestionable, his step-overs left me yawning. No he is not the greatest, somewhat like Schumacher at Farrari, he was blessed to be in a brilliant team that made him look better than he is. If Real don't get the balance right, he will look like a clown doing party tricks.

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  • 103. At 1:08pm on 12 Jun 2009, djwaxon wrote:

    A lot of people are saying sign Tevez at the same time as saying this could free up Rooney, who could forge a good partnership with Berba. To play all 3, one of them's gonna end up out wide which isn't going to get the best out of them, and i think Berba and Rooney have the potential to be a more fruitful partnership than Tevez and Rooney. The Tevez money would be better spent on a central midfielder to run things, which united have been missing for a while now. Also, it would be nice to see Anderson given a chance to play his natural more attacking position next season...

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  • 104. At 1:31pm on 12 Jun 2009, mortieboi wrote:

    No better player has graced the EPL, yea we won't miss all the diving and hissy fits at the ref, but will miss the all round brilliance he brings. At the end of the day, £80 million is just to hard to turn down, but hopefully with him out the way, it will be Rooney's time to shine.
    How should of money be spent? A few names have been mentioned, Ribery, Eto'o, Silva, Benzema, all quality players and wouldn't say no to any of them, but i'd personally like to see a midfield general brought, same sort of mould as Roy Keane, someone who can boss the middle of the park, failing that, someone like either of the Barca two that totally out passed us in the final, Xavi & Inesta. Also i think Glen Johnson would be good business, he's getting better each season and with Neville's legs another season older, surely he fits the bill as a replacement?

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  • 105. At 1:44pm on 12 Jun 2009, maccarelly wrote:

    I feel that this is just another step for Fergie that needed to be taken. He only gets rid of the big player if he is detrimental to the squad or the teamplay seems to revolve around that one player, examples of this being Beckham, Keane and RVN.

    He got a talking down from the players after the derby and was bad for the dressing room morale, good team spirit is seen to be key to Fergie.

    The team on the pitch seemed to be too reliant on Ronaldo creating something out of nothing or playing counter attacking football, Ronaldo being sold may lead to a different style of play.

    Hopefully the team for next season will be;
    Signing from (Valencia, Arteta, Ribery)
    Hargreaves/Anderson (depending on Injury/Opposition)

    With possible further signings of Schneidjer and Rossi.

    Looking to the future Utd have exceptional potential (hoping at least some achieve it) so the short term needs to be resolved with a bit of creative talent/midfield general.

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  • 106. At 2:11pm on 12 Jun 2009, HoldenIBM wrote:

    America's Los Angeles Times took a more quirky look at the transfer by jokingly saying: "The hair-gel industry in north-west England suffered a catastrophic blow on Thursday in a world-record sports transaction after which the soccer marvel Cristiano Ronaldo seemed Spain-bound."

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  • 107. At 2:12pm on 12 Jun 2009, redforever wrote:

    Fun to see United fans trying to put a shine on losing their most influential player for the past 3 years. No amount of signings will put a better and more impactful player on the field. Its also fun to see how confident you are in the two recent signings Tossup Legjig? I am sure they are good players, but its a long way from, potential to world class.

    One thing I have seen picked up as much as I expected, was how poor Ronaldo was in the big games. He did score that great goal in Porto, but 9 times out of ten he is nowhere to be found in big matches.

    I also believe Rooney has benefitted greatly from the partnership with Ronaldo. They seeme dto have telepathy. With his buddy gone, you might find Rooney a little less effective.

    Finally not much mention of Ferguson having to eat his words about not selling to the Real Madrid "mobsters"....I am sure he will wriggle out of it by pointing out that they have a new President.

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  • 108. At 2:51pm on 12 Jun 2009, Parish87 wrote:

    Cya Ronaldo
    Cya Ronaldooooo
    Jetting off to Spain, won't be back again
    Cya Ronaldooooo

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  • 109. At 2:51pm on 12 Jun 2009, earlpiggot wrote:

    Who the hell are the Footballing Goats of Skiathos? :-D

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  • 110. At 2:53pm on 12 Jun 2009, Charlton2Best2Law wrote:

    Something that does irritate me a lot is the criticism of Ronaldo angling for a move, then criticism for being upset at being substituted against City - no, that's all justified, but what of Tevez? He's spent most of the year doing snide leaks to various newspapers around the world, claiming the problem is he doesn't get picked enough, that Ferguson doesn't like him, that he doesn't want to stay; then when he is substituted after playing very badly he not only acts like a crime has been committed but tries to stir up argument between fans and Fergie. It seems his atrocious attitude is accepted because he runs round pointlessly a lot, huffing and puffing. His stats aren't as good as Berbatov's, yet he clearly thinks he is God's gift to football. Ronaldo has the ability and final product to outweigh his sometimes poor behaviour. Tevez would be a real waste of money; Ronaldo is still a bargain.

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  • 111. At 3:01pm on 12 Jun 2009, Charlton2Best2Law wrote:

    Re. torontored. The old myth about Ronaldo 'going missing' in big games. Like Messi against Chelsea? Actually, Ronaldo usually did well in big games, either being our best player (as against Arsemal and, I think, Barcelona) or by taking three players out of the game because the opposition was terrified of him. Messi wasn't the best player in the final, and was simply poor in the semis; marked out of the game by Boswinga? Wow. In the biggest games players like Messi and Ronaldo will never dominate completely; but they will produce one or two flashes which can change the game. Ronaldo would have done that of Pique hadn't got away with the most cynical (ah, beautiful football, Barcelona) body check and still remained on the field.

    Also, Rooney will now come into his own. Ferguson's biggest mistake has been playing him as a left winger. Watch him go this year - and in Europe he will be a revelation.

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  • 112. At 3:13pm on 12 Jun 2009, Charlton2Best2Law wrote:

    The finest players play for the team - by using their abilities to help the team win. Best was criticised (by Charlton amongst others!) for being self-indulgent - it wasn't unknown for him to beat a player then go back to beat him again. The point is that Ronaldo was central to United's success the last two years - especially last year. What, exactly, should he have done 'for the team'? Played in defence? How often have you seen Pele or Messi tackle back? How often did Maldini dribble past players or score incredible free kicks? This is such a stupid attitude and is based on dislike of Ronaldo, not any true understanding of football.

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  • 113. At 3:28pm on 12 Jun 2009, Diala Anthony wrote:

    "Emmanuel Pogatetz?" Are you drunk, Robbo?

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  • 114. At 3:32pm on 12 Jun 2009, Seen-It-All wrote:

    One important point being overlooked is CR's intense desire to leave Manchester United and play for Real Madrid. His motivation will reach new levels at the Bernabeu, and I think he will be even more successful (and happy) there than he was in England. I pity United when they next meet RM in the Champion's League!

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  • 115. At 3:34pm on 12 Jun 2009, SimpleTruth09 wrote:

    "The English premier league is miles ahead of La Liga. It makes no difference whatsoever that Madrid bank roll Kaka, Ronaldo and whomever else into their league. The overall standard of the teams and the quality of play in La Liga is still well below that of the Premier League."

    Sometimes you read things like this and wonder what people are thinking about. La Liga is easily equal to the EPL and in fact I would say the standard of teams is actually higher. The main difference being is that the EPL have 4 teams playing at a very high level where Spain really only have two. After that though, the Spanish teams are probably stronger all the way down the table.

    Of course the entire debate is completely pointless since the entire purpose of these leagues is entertainment. With that in mind I think just about any (league) netural fan would agree that La Liga is every bit as good to watch as the EPL. Which is what makes me wonder what someone is thinking when they feel the need to post something like that.

    Now my feelings about Ronaldo. The guy brings out something about people. You will notice anytime a player likes this moves out of the country, a great deal of people will feel compelled to say negative things about them. To me that is a good sign of the players true quality.

    So basically the negative comments go like this. He was not a team player. Well the truth is we all no better than that. Period. The guy had far more assist than Rooney (who according to this forum did the donkey work. But still could not manage the assist? Illogical.) But more telling is none of his team mates have ever accused him of that.

    But, we also have the diving-whinning-ect guys. These guys are safer since its just opinion but stats would suggest the opinion he dives a lot is probably not correct. Or at least the stats suggest he does not dive anymore than any other top player. In fact, by the numbers, Messi is the worst diver in the game. Personally, I think Ronaldo is fairly average when it comes to diving. When I am looking around the EPL for the worst diver, from the top players, Gerrard is the person I think of. But no matter who it is, pointing to Ronaldo is more like some can of sour grapes.

    So anyway what does this mean to Man UTD? Well that is hard to say. Despite the opinions of "the world sucks crowd" both RVN and Beckham both did very well once moving on from Man UTD. In fact both improved as players. at the same time in both cases Man UTD suffered the following season but then got right back to business as normal after a short period. I think this will be no different except one thing - £80m is a lot money.

    So its a good move for Ronaldo and you would have to think despite losing a great team player it will be good for Man UTD as well. Man UTD need to replace Ronaldo, and soon Giggs/Scholes - I think with £80m that should not be to hard.

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  • 116. At 4:35pm on 12 Jun 2009, Salt4Zombies wrote:

    As a Manchester United fan, I am personally torn at this news. On the one hand, I dislike CR's antics, to the point of finding them difficult to defend. On the other, he has been the "special" ingredient for, at least, the last three seasons. I wish him well!

    Lokking forward, Benezema(sp?) is amazing. I think that the OT spotlight makes players better, and here's a guy who has, realistically, stated that he wants to be the best in the world. I say give him a chance.

    Riberieryieie (sp!) is great, as is Villa. However, as in any walk of life, you should strive to identify your weakest link, and then improve it. Don't mess with what works. In our case, the weakest link is in the defensive midfielder role. I rate Carrick and Hargreaves and Fletch, but Iniesta et al. showed us all that good defensive knowhow can be combined with forward thinking abillities.

    Anyway, just one fanatics oppinion, but I'm sure that I speak for everyone here when I say; "Bring on 2009/2010"!

    Have a good summer!

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  • 117. At 7:06pm on 12 Jun 2009, Roonaldos wrote:

    buy a goalkeeper, foster isnt great yet and vds is old and not as good as he has been, the reason he doesnt concede many is because of the defence.
    buy naughton, then we will have the perfect defence.
    buy a defensive mid(could be toure). hargreaves may be forced to retire, and we dont have any real ball winners.
    buy an attacking midfielder(diego?), our current ones are old or simply not good enough yet(anderson).
    buy valencia for the right, sell nani.
    buy ribery for the left, if he will come.
    buy tevez, or a tall centre forward who is good in the air and plays on the last man. this could be benzema but i am not convinced by him completely.

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  • 118. At 8:40pm on 12 Jun 2009, ArsenalArseneArshavin wrote:

    I don't understand rival fans that want him to leave the PL. We want to see the best players in England not Spain, and we don't want to win trophies because the sale has weakened United. It is more satisfying to win when they are strong. As much as I hate him, I wanted him to stay..

    Now La Liga is going to be awesome with Messi, Kaka and Ronaldo. They already have Henry, Iniesta, Villa, Silva, Eto'o, Robben etc etc

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  • 119. At 9:32pm on 12 Jun 2009, el-greco wrote:

    Good player but far from deserving the praise you give him. Anyone else of similar calibre who got the type of quality service he got from his team mates would have scored as many goals as he did. Free kick failure rate was also high compared to the great free kick takers of the past, but sure, if and when they connected and on target, invariably you got to see a great goal. Stepovers: big deal! Rivelino did this and better in 1970. He's talked about like he's a Best, or a Pele, or a Maradona. Forget it, next to those guys he's just a one trick pony. It'll be good for the team not to have him next season.

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  • 120. At 10:20am on 13 Jun 2009, RossiCAFC wrote:

    Roonaldos - buy an attacking midfielder(diego?)

    Have you not heard that he has already signed for Juventus?
    It was one of the earliest big money moves this summer.

    I would of said Diego might be worth a shout for United but it won't happen now.

    Also, I'm not sure you could get Benzema in. Rumour has it Juventus are gonna offer Lyon David Trezeguet + cash for Benzema.

    I'd put a cheeky few quid on that happening.

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  • 121. At 11:35am on 13 Jun 2009, WhitleyBayWonTheVase wrote:

    To #115, SimplyTruth09:

    I have read a lot of your posts on articles. The fact is that the vast majority of them seek to belittle other posters and dominate with your holier than though gospel. So, please don't patronise me with your self proclaimed encyclopedic knowledge and see fit to use phrases such as 'i wonder what some people are thinking' and 'why they feel the need to post anything like that'.

    You attempt to deride what is the opinion of others with unintelligent and witless comments that show complete inconsideration for the fact that blogs are a part of this community that spur conversation, debate and inevitably bring about differences.

    By all means, state your opinion, but please save me the condescending tone that you force upon others. These are open discussions that are ruined by users who cannot give constructive posts without the need to resort to attacking others.

    Don't do it with my posts.

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  • 122. At 6:54pm on 13 Jun 2009, Bodin! Fachy Fawr wrote:

    I wouldn't mind betting that the EPL has 3 out of the 4 CL semi-finalists next season as well ... and the other one won't be Real Madrid.

    I don't think La Liga can be regarded as the better league until they find another half decent team to challenge the 'Big 2'.

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  • 123. At 00:06am on 14 Jun 2009, bertrandmcnally wrote:

    simpletruth, simpletruth, simpletruth...say his name three times.... Should we correct your spelling, grammar, hypocrisy and general cognitive dissonance?

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  • 124. At 12:55pm on 14 Jun 2009, morgs7397 wrote:

    simpletruth09 what you are saying about diving is not necessarily the point and how you can say the extent of his diving is "average" is totally unacceptable, have you not watched the lad? Plus its the reaction and tantrums he throws, its like he thinks "you cant tackle me im too good so has to be a foul" its a disgrace. Sour grapes? No. I think you must watch him through tinted lenses.

    P.S. he is not in the same league as the geniuses mentioned.

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  • 125. At 12:55pm on 15 Jun 2009, TheDeluded wrote:

    If Portugal don't get to the world cup ... £80 million is gonna look a wee bit over-inflated. Good time to sell. Real definitely paying over the odds.

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  • 126. At 5:37pm on 16 Jun 2009, wavejunkie wrote:

    ronaldo is good and a marvel to watch, but he really cant compare to any of the real greats of football: zidane, best, pele, or even maradonna. but on the other hand he does have a huge non-football oriented fan club. he is more in the class of beckham, but not quite as popular in england.

    great blog btw very creative writing style.

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  • 127. At 5:31pm on 18 Jun 2009, Nuvolari1970 wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

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