Exclusive: Cristiano Ronaldo advised to stay at Real Madrid for further 18 months before making possible switch to Manchester United

The player would be entitled to a huge signing on fee if he runs down his contract

Cristiano Ronaldo is privately being urged to wait 18 months before making his last big move in football – a strategy which could place him within financial reach of Manchester United.

The Independent reported on Saturday that the Premier League champions are convinced that Ronaldo wants to leave Real Madrid and believe that they are the only English club he would contemplate signing for.

But while United accept that they cannot compete this summer with the likely £85m bid from Monaco – a tax-free principality where he can become the world’s richest player – or Paris Saint Germain, the player is being advised that if he waits until he is out of contract in June 2015, he will be able to secure a colossal signing on-fee and substantial wages which would add up to a 140m euros (£118m) welcome home package .

The big cash offer plus tax-protected wages this summer would make Monaco favourites among the few clubs capable of signing the Portuguese. But sources close to the player suggest that he is unlikely to be tempted by the newly promoted Ligue 1 side because of the consequences to his career of forfeiting at least a season of Champions League football.

That leaves United as a strong contender when the player’s contract expires. What they save on not having to pay Madrid for his transfer now they could plough into a 60m euros signing on fee and 20m euros (£16.9m) a year take home pay across four years with 100 percent of his image rights – currently shared 60-40 in his favour with Real Madrid.

The player’s agent, Jorge Mendes, has reminded the player of the benefits of sitting tight and Ronaldo – who has gone on holiday to Florida without sitting down with Real Madrid to talk over an extension to his current deal - has proved in the past that he is willing to put a desire to leave a club on hold.

He was desperate to leave Old Trafford in the summer of 2008 but Sir Alex Ferguson beat a path to Portugal to persuade him to give United one last campaign before satisfying his long-held ambition to play for Real Madrid.  Holding off for a further 18 months – he will be free to talk to other clubs in January 2015 - may prove harder at the Bernabeu, as there is no equivalent father-figure like Ferguson around.

But Ronaldo has always been motivated by money and the prospect of a huge United signing-on fee could be the incentive. Ronaldo will be 30 in February 2015 and may feel that he has come full circle by ending his career at the club which gave him his footballing education.

United, who have retained strong links with Mendes, believe that Ronaldo has maintained a deep affection for the club – not only because of his success at Old Trafford, but because of his appreciation of a culture in which the players are looked after, even though they have had to conform to the rules of not taking on too many commercial opportunities in the Ferguson era.

As The Independent revealed last week, Monaco are understood to be preparing a major offer, as well as PSG. Real president Florentino Perez has met with Ronaldo’s agent Jorge Mendes in the last three weeks and put a new 15m euros (£12.7m) contract on the table. But Ronaldo is unhappy that this is the first proposed contract renewal in his four years at the club and, aware of the financial advantages of not signing, he has held firm and refused Real’s new offer.

The 28-year-old currently takes home 10m euros (£8.4m) basic pay topped up by a further 7.5m (6.3m) in bonuses. He also earns 16m (£13.5m) in commercial deals. Madrid are willing to boost his annual basic take home pay to 15m (£12.7m) and negotiate his image rights – taking a slightly smaller cut – but they fear there is a real possibility they could lose him for nothing.

An alternative possible resolution at the end of next season could see Real Madrid radically reducing their asking price for Ronaldo, aware that he would be 12 months from leaving for free. That would also serve United well.

If Ronaldo does not become he signature signing who is expected to usher in the David Moyes era at Old Trafford, Cesc Fabregas might do so. Though the Barcelona player has suggested in interviews from the Spain camp at the Confederations Cup in Brazil that he does not wish to leave, he has provided the caveat that if the Catalan side wish him to go then he will have to do so. If, as seems possible, the club is forced to decide on keeping either Fabregas or the Brazilaian Thiago then Fabregas may be the one who leaves. He is viewed with nowhere near the same affection as at Arsenal.

News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Joel Edgerton, John Turturro and Christian Bale in Exodus: Gods and Kings
film Ridley Scott reveals truth behind casting decisions of Exodus
News
people
Sport
footballArsenal 2 Borussia Dortmund 0: And they can still top the group
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
An unseen image of Kurt Cobain at home featured in the film 'Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck'
filmThe singers widow and former bandmates have approved project
News
Andy Murray with his girlfriend of nine years, Kim Sears who he has got engaged to
peopleWimbledon champion announces engagement to girlfriend Kim Sears
Arts and Entertainment
Jake Quickenden and Edwina Currie are joining the I'm A Celebrity...Get Me Out Of Here! camp
tv
Arts and Entertainment
George Mpanga has been shortlisted for the Critics’ Choice prize
music
News
Albert Camus (left) and Jean-Paul Sartre fell out in 1952 and did not speak again before Camus’s death
people
Arts and Entertainment
Roisin, James and Sanjay in the boardroom
tvReview: This week's failing project manager had to go
News
Ed Miliband visiting the Holocaust museum in Jerusalem. The Labour leader has spoken more openly of his heritage recently
newsAttacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But are the barbs more sinister?
Arts and Entertainment
'Felfie' (2014) by Alison Jackson
photographyNew exhibition shows how female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising
News
i100
Life and Style
Fright night: the board game dates back to at least 1890
life
Environment
The vaquita is being killed by fishermen trying to catch the totoaba fish, which is prized in China
environmentJust 97 of the 'world's cutest' sea mammals remain
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game
There's a Good Girl exhibition: How female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising

In pictures: There's a Good Girl exhibition

The new exhibition reveals how female creatives are changing the way women are portrayed in advertising
UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover - from advent calendars to doll's houses

UK firm Biscuiteers is giving cookies a makeover

It worked with cupcakes, doughnuts and macarons so no wonder someone decided to revamp the humble biscuit
Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

Can SkySaga capture the Minecraft magic?

It's no surprise that the building game born in Sweden in 2009 and now played by millions, has imitators keen to construct their own mega money-spinner
The King's School is way ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology

Staying connected: The King's School

The school in Cambridgeshire is ahead of the pack when it comes to using the latest classroom technology. Richard Garner discovers how teachers and pupils stay connected
Christmas 2014: 23 best women's perfumes

Festively fragrant: the best women's perfumes

Give a loved one a luxe fragrance this year or treat yourself to a sensual pick-me-up
Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund: Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition

Arsenal vs Borussia Dortmund

The Ox celebrates century with trademark display of speed and intuition
Billy Joe Saunders vs Chris Eubank Jnr: When two worlds collide

When two worlds collide

Traveller Billy Joe Saunders did not have a pampered public-school upbringing - unlike Saturday’s opponent Chris Eubank Jnr
Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Drifting and forgotten - turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: Turning lives around for ex-soldiers

Our partner charities help veterans on the brink – and get them back on their feet
Putin’s far-right ambition: Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU

Putin’s far-right ambition

Think-tank reveals how Russian President is wooing – and funding – populist parties across Europe to gain influence in the EU
Tove Jansson's Moominland: What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?

Escape to Moominland

What was the inspiration for Finland's most famous family?