Cristiano Ronaldo has sent a message of thanks to Edinson Cavani after Uruguay agreed to change his shirt number at Manchester United.
Cavani had occupied the shirt number since joining the club as a free agent a year ago and started this campaign wearing the shirt – including in his cameo appearance during Sunday’s win at Wolves.
Yet the whirlwind return of Ronaldo had thrown the situation into jeopardy, with the Portuguese superstar keen to wear the number seven shirt with which he has become synonymous.
Ronaldo wore the number during his six seasons at Old Trafford between 2003 and 2009 before also occupying that shirt across his stints with Real Madrid and Juventus, while also owning the number at the international level with Portugal.
The solution came with the exit of Dan James to Leeds United – the Wales international occupied the number 21 shirt at the Red Devils, which is the number Cavani wears for Uruguay, according to The Mirror.
That led to the striker’s willingness to switch his shirt number from seven to the vacant 21, allowing Ronaldo to secure the shirt number for the campaign.
Now, the 36-year-old has sent a message of thanks to his new teammate – who could form a potentially devastating partnership for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side of this campaign.
“I was not sure if it would be possible to have the number seven shirt again,” Ronaldo admitted.
“So I would like to say a huge thank you to Edi for this incredible gesture.”
The number seven shirt at Old Trafford has a legacy due to the icon figures of George Best, Bryan Robson, Eric Cantona and David Beckham all thriving in the shirt at the club.
Ronaldo’s exit from United in the summer of 2009 led to Michael Owen inheriting the shirt before Antonio Valencia later took on in the number, yet neither reached the levels of fame and adulation of their predecessors.
In Ronaldo’s first six seasons at the club, between 2003 and 2009, he made 292 appearances and scored a remarkable 118 goals, winning nine trophies including three Premier League titles and the UEFA Champions League.
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