Cristiano Ronaldo wants to leave Spain and, therefore, Real Madrid, a development which has set alarm bells ringing at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.
The player is currently away with the Portugal national team and the club do not want to discuss his future over the phone, so will instead wait two weeks until after the Confederations Cup final on July 2 to move forward and to hold face-to-face meetings.
In the meantime, they hope that Ronaldo won’t take part in any more interviews, while they also hope the situation will calm down during his time in Russia.
While there are a number of issues to have factored into his decision, the main reason is the trouble he is experiencing with the Spanish tax authorities, who have accused him of defrauding 14.7 million euros.
Real Madrid backed the player in the aftermath of that announcement, so Friday’s revelation that he wants to leave has come as a shock to some, especially given that he has previously said he’d like to stay at the club until he is 41.
As much as his decision is said to be final, there is a hope at the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu that they can convince the 32-year-old to change his mind over the next fortnight, but they will not keep anyone against their wishes, so long as a club can meet his release clause.
Portuguese media reported earlier in the week that an offer of 180 million euros was on the horizon, but it has not yet been made, while Manchester United and Paris Saint-Germain are two possible landing spots, a deal which could cost them 400 million euros between the transfer fee and salary.
Real Madrid will consider a number of different scenarios, with or without Ronaldo, ahead of their next talks with the player.