Rio Ferdinand revealed he rang Cristiano Ronaldo “straight away” in an attempt to persuade the Juventus star not to sign for Manchester City.
Reports this week suggested former Manchester United great Ronaldo had been offered to rivals City by his agent Jorge Mendes.
City were in the hunt for a forward after missing out on Harry Kane, who is staying at Tottenham.
As late as Friday morning – when Ronaldo left Juve training – it appeared the Portugal captain was all set to sign for the Premier League champions.
Speculation only mounted when Juve coach Massimilano Allegri confirmed Ronaldo was leaving Turin, yet in a remarkable turnaround, it is United who are instead set to re-sign the 36-year-old, who they sold to Real Madrid in 2009.
The Red Devils on Friday confirmed they have reached an agreement to bring the 36-year-old back to Old Trafford, subject to agreeing personal terms, a visa application and the completion of a medical.
A fee of €15millon plus €8m in add-ons has been reported.
And, in an appearance in an interview for his fashion label, FIVE, Ferdinand revealed he spoke to his former team-mate.
Ferdinand, who was wearing sunglasses in the video, said prior to United confirming a deal has been agreed: “It’s a beautiful day man, and when it’s a beautiful day you’ve got wear shades!
“Sir Alex Ferguson would’ve been exactly the same, he would’ve hated to see Cristiano Ronaldo in a Man City shirt, just like anyone who’s been connected for a long period of time at this football club.
“I rang him [Ronaldo] straight away: ‘What’s going on? Tell me you’re lying.’ Every type of ‘no, no, no, no’ in the conversation.
“I’m like the fans, we’re all the same like that. ‘Please tell me you’re not going there.’
“I hope that there’s an announcement and it’s one that I would be happy with. It’s the best. We’ve seen some great signings this summer.”
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