The legendary Brazilian frontman claims that terms were in place to keep him at Camp Nou, but his longest spell in Spain ended up being at Real Madrid.
Brazilian legend Ronaldo Luís Nazário de Lima (Ronaldo) has revealed that he never wanted to leave Barcelona. After netting 47 goals in 49 games in all competitions, he was in the process of signing a new contract with Barcelona.
The question is, what went wrong? Was he not happy with the club, was the club not happy with him, or did a bigger opportunity come knocking at the door?
Former Barcelona president Joan Gaspart stated that Ronaldo wanted to stay at the club and that they typed out a contract in front of Ronaldo and his two agents.
“It was three in the afternoon and we justifiably decided to go out to eat and celebrate Ronaldo’s renewal, and then return to the office and sign the agreement we had reached.”
Gaspart claims that “one of his agents went off for half an hour to take a phone call”, which happened to be from Inter president Massimo Moratti.
“At that time we did not pay much attention to the agent’s absence. When he came back he apologised, had some coffee and toasted before going to the office to sign the contract.
“From the first moment we got to president [Josep] Nunez’s office, the agents began to put obstacles up, they told Ronaldo to go home and that they would call him to sign. I asked them if they did not want to sign.
“They insisted they did but what they wanted was to renegotiate almost the entire contract, increasing the financial terms. They were trying to destroy the talks.”
Even when Barca agreed to reopen discussions, it became clear that the player’s agents were holding out for a San Siro switch.
“When we managed to renegotiate the five points they requested, they found a sixth part, which we also solved, and then a seventh,” he stated.
“In tears, [Ronaldo] told me that he was sorry but his agents had a much better offer than ours and that it was better for all parties for him to go to another club to make much more money.”
Summarizing the transfer, was this the beginning era for agents to force their clients into clubs for hefty fees? It’s apparent in recent times that many players are joining clubs for the money and not giving their 100% performance and dedication to the club.