At the age of 32 years old, Cristiano Ronaldo is still one of the best players in the world. He still at his prime and he is having another great season for Real Madrid. However, it's only a matter of years before he declines and he gets sold to a different club.
According to Spanish news outlet Diario Gol, Real Madrid is in secret negotiations with Chinese Super League clubs regarding the sale of Ronaldo. Madrid president Florentino Perez reportedly wants to sell his best player before the start of the 2018-2019 season in what could be a world-record fee.
Chinese Super League clubs have been spending a lot of money on some of Europe's stars in the past couple of years and imagine how much they are going to pay for one of the best players in the world. Perez has also reportedly given Zinedine Zidane the green light to sell Ronald because of his ups and downs this season.
Late last year, Ronaldo's agent Jorge Mendes claimed in an interview with Sky Italia (h/t Goal.com) that Madrid had a €300 million offer from a Chinese club for his client's services. He also noted that the Chinese club was willing to pay Ronaldo €100 million per year as salary.
"An offer of €300 million to Real Madrid and more than €100m per year to the player from China but money is not everything, the Spanish club is his life," Mendes said.
The 32-year-old football superstar signed a new four-year extension with Madrid last November 2016 that will keep him in the Spanish capital until 2021. However, it won't be difficult to see an older Ronaldo leave Madrid to play in China or in the United States.
However, the transfer rumor comes at a time wherein Ronaldo being scrutinized by the media for his recent drop in form. It is despite proving time and time again that he still has it. He recently became Europe's all-time goal scorer.
Ronaldo started his career with Sporting CP in Portugal before moving to Manchester United in 2003 for €15 million. He played six seasons in England wherein he became one of the best players in the world under the guidance of Sir Alex Ferguson.
United sold him to Madrid for a then-world record fee €94 million in 2009. He quickly established himself in Madrid and evolved from a wide midfielder into a top forwards in the world. He has played eight seasons in Spain and he has expressed his interest in finishing his career with the club.
Nevertheless, Ronaldo proved his critics wrong by scoring a hat-trick in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League semifinal matchup against Atletico Madrid. It was a classic performance by Ronaldo, who silenced his critics for now, in the 3-0 victory at the Santiago Bernabeu.
"It was a total game from the team, we played phenomenally well. We have a good advantage, but it is not over yet. Atletico are very strong, they are not in the semi-finals by chance, and we must keep our concentration next Wednesday," Ronaldo told reporters after the game, via ESPN.
"The whole team deserves to be congratulated, they were tremendous. It just fell to me to score the goals. We played very well from the start to finish, and the goals came naturally. We deserved a complete game against them," he added.
Madrid will come into the next Wednesday's game full of confidence as they have a 3-0 advantage over Atletico. If Madrid comes out on top and avoids an upset, they will reach their second straight UEFA Champions League Final. They will face the winner of the Juventus-Monaco matchup.