An insight into the ongoing speculation linking Cristiano Ronaldo with a shock move to Chelsea has been provided this weekend.
The news which Manchester United supporters across the globe were no doubt dreading was of course forthcoming a week ago.
This came in the form of confirmation that star attacker Ronaldo had informed the powers that be at Old Trafford of his desire to depart, should a suitable offer for his services be tabled.
The 37-year-old is understood to be keen to avoid a season plying his trade outside of the Champions League so late in his illustrious career, having been left understandably underwhelmed by developments on the red half of Manchester since his return 12 months ago.
🔺 EXCLUSIVE: Cristiano Ronaldo has asked to be allowed to leave Manchester United should the Premier League club receive a satisfactory offer in the transfer window https://t.co/yx8POGB5M4
— Times Sport (@TimesSport) July 2, 2022
The week since, in turn, has seen a whole host of clubs tipped as potential landing spots for Ronaldo.
And chief amongst them, as alluded to above, have come United’s Premier League rivals, Chelsea.
The Blues, of course, are on the lookout for reinforcements up top ahead of the new campaign, on the back of Romelu Lukaku’s loan return to Inter Milan.
And Ronaldo, it would seem, has been identified as a potential short-term answer to such needs, with new Chelsea owner Todd Boehly understood to have held a meeting with Jorge Mendes, the veteran’s agent, to gauge his interest in a Stamford Bridge switch this summer.
One key figure in west London who does not yet appear to have given his full blessing to CR7’s arrival, however, comes in the form of Thomas Tuchel.
As per a report from the Daily Mail, the Pensioners’ boss is ‘reluctant’ to add Ronaldo to his attacking ranks with a view to the 2022/23 campaign.
This comes with Tuchel in harbouring concerns as to how exactly the five-time Ballon d’Or winner would fit into his setup, keen to employ a more ‘fluid’ front three, in the mould of Liverpool’s once rip-roaring trio of Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino and Sadio Mane.
Such a vision is built around Kai Havertz as the central attacking key, flanked by chief transfer targets Raheem Sterling and Raphinha.