Roy Keane sets surprising trophy target for Cristiano Ronaldo and Man United
What the hell is going on?
Cristiano Ronaldo is on his way back to Manchester United in the same transfer window that saw Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane signed up.
The team that finished second in the league and reached the Europa League Final have been considerably strengthened. They have a world-class defender added to the squad, as well as one of English football's top attacking talents and one of the best two footballers of the modern era.
With all that considered, why are Roy Keane and Gary Neville jumping out of their seats and setting out lofty, title-winning goals for their former club?
Neville was first up, on Saturday, as Liverpool hosted Chelsea in front of the Sky Sports cameras. Asked by Jamie Redknapp and Kelly Cates if the Ronaldo transfer would change his season predictions of a Man City, Chelsea and United 1-2-3, Neville demurred.
The former United defender said he would stick with City to retain their league title. Sure, he argued, he would dearly love for United to win a first title since 2013 but he wouldn't bet his house on it.
On to the Sky coverage of Sunday's Premier League action and Roy Keane declared that Ronaldo was coming back to Old Trafford 'to win stuff'. The only issue is, for many United fans, the "stuff" Keane is referring to is the middling competitions that Alex Ferguson used to have way down his list of priorities.
"It's great news for United, the fans, the Premier League," Keane began.
"There's no doubt in my mind that he's still a world-class player... people may have their doubts, but the hunger and desire is still there for him. It's not a pay-day for him - the guy is worth fortunes.
"We saw in the Euros that he won the Golden Boot. The World Cup is a year and a half away, so he'll have that incentive going for him. Going back to United, he's a clever guy. He's only going back to United to win stuff.
"Okay, my doubts are that I don't think he'll be the difference in winning the big trophies. But to win an FA Cup or League Cup, that's obvious a possibility."
🗣"He's coming back to man united to win stuff."
Roy Keane has been swept along with the great news of Cristiano Ronaldo coming back to Manchester United pic.twitter.com/HdqjYzqtSd
— Football Daily (@footballdaily) August 29, 2021
So that is the team that finished second to Manchester City, last season, with Ronaldo, Sancho and Varane all added to the United mix and all for the possibility of an FA Cup or League Cup.
One would wonder what is stopping these United legends from holding back and not making bold predictions for the season ahead. Some, such as Jamie Carragher, have already posited that it may be the manager, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer himself.
For Keane, it is squad issues and not Solskjaer, that are glaring. "Man United still have the same problems, with or without Ronaldo," he declared, "and that's midfield and goalkeeper problems."