Cristiano Ronaldo is alleged to have given trusted agent Jorge Mendes a colossal ultimatum before the pair split up and ended their two-decade relationship.
The 37-year-old superstar signed for Saudi Arabian side Al-Nassr in December following his acrimonious departure from Manchester United in a transfer engineered by Ricardo Regufe, Ronaldo's personal manager and long-time business partner. By the time the mega deal was completed - which will see Ronaldo earn an eye-watering £173million per year - it was widely understood than he and Mendes had ended their partnership, having first worked together in 2003 when Ronaldo left Sporting Lisbon to join United.
It soon emerged that the five-time Ballon d'Or winner had gone against Mendes' advice by leaving Manchester this winter, a desire which he'd had from July, having also ignored his agent's pleas not to burn his bridges at Old Trafford during a bombshell interview with Piers Morgan. Now it's claimed that Ronaldo demanded his agent get him a move to one of two clubs - or they were done.
According to Spanish outlet El Mundo, Ronaldo instructed his sporting representative - the man behind all four of his previous lucrative transfers to likes of United, Real Madrid and Juventus - to somehow broker a deal with Premier League rivals Chelsea or German giants Bayern Munich.
Despite holding talks with Chelsea co-owner Todd Boehly and getting in contact with Bayern over the summer, Mendes failed to land Ronaldo his preferred move and the duo subsequently parted ways.
It's believed that Boehly proposed the idea of signing the Portugal captain to then-manager Thomas Tuchel. The Blues boss wasn't keen on the idea, though, with Ronaldo's unhappiness and apparent behaviour beginning to become a problem at Old Trafford and the veteran forward unable to play the kind of fluid football which Tuchel preferred during his time in West London.
In contrast, the Bayern hierarchy were in agreement that Ronaldo wasn't the type of player that they should be dabbling with, as CEO Oliver Kahn went public to say as much in October. "We briefly discussed Ronaldo at Bayern and Borussia Dortmund probably did too," Kahn told Bild.
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"We also see the big picture of the Bundesliga. Of course, superstars like Ronaldo are an important factor in attracting attention to the league. He is one of the greatest of the last decade. But we quickly dismissed that."
Ronaldo is now chartering a new path out on his own, as close friend Regufe isn't considered agent. Mendes' now former client has made one start for Al-Nassar, as he blanked in Sunday's 1-0 victory over Ettifaq.
The win sent Al-Nassr top of the Saudi Pro League, although Ronaldo's first appearance in the Middle East was more memorable from a personal point of view. Captaining an All-Star side made up of players from Al-Nassr and Riyadh neighbours Al-Hilal, he scored twice in a friendly with Paris Saint-Germain and earned the man of the match award.