Former Barcelona president Joan Laporta has revealed that they turned down the chance to sign Cristiano Ronaldo before Manchester United because they were about to get Ronaldinho.
“We were about to sign Ronaldinho and Rafa Marquez,” Laporta said in an interview reported in Marca. “Marquez’s people proposed Cristiano Ronaldo to us. He was at Sporting Clube at the time.”
“One of his agents said that they had a player who they had sold to [Manchester] United for €19 million, but they’d sell him to us for €17 million.
“But we had already invested in Ronaldinho at the time. Cristiano played more out wide than in the centre. We thought we were covered, so we rejected him and I don’t regret it,” Laporta said.