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Rafael admits he wanted to tell Cristiano Ronaldo not to re-join Man Utd

Cristiano Ronaldo has already hit the ground running since returning to Manchester United, but a certain former player didn’t want him to complete his Old Trafford return

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Former Manchester United right-back Rafael da Silva has admitted that he wanted to tell Cristiano Ronaldo not to re-join the Red Devils.

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Ronaldo completed his sensational return to the Red Devils on deadline day, after leaving the club in 2009 for Real Madrid.

Rafael spent seven years at Old Trafford, from 2008-15, and the full-back recently returned to his homeland with Botafogo after spells at Lyon and Istanbul Basaksehir.

Speaking out about Ronaldo’s return, the Brazilian has jokingly admitted he wished he could have told the Portuguese star to join him at Botafogo, rather than see him move back to Manchester.

“If I could choose one to play here, I’d talk to Cristiano Ronaldo, tell him to come play here. Is there another one? There’s no way,” he told Fogao Net.

Ex-Manchester United defender Rafael said he didn’t want Cristiano Ronaldo to re-join the club

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“I’d tell him not to go to Manchester, and I’m in love with Manchester United too, but I’d tell him to come to Botafogo, come to a different team.

“We have a group, he’s not even there anymore, I played against him, I don’t speak regularly. But if I could speak… If I send a message he will reply.”

Rafael also discussed United legend Ryan Giggs, who the Brazilian also played with during his long spell in England.

“Giggs played very well, very. Of the guys I played, there aren’t many better than him. A phenomenon,” he added.

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Rafael made 170 appearances for United and won the Premier League three times during the time he spent in Manchester.

Ronaldo meanwhile, has already made an impact both on-and-off the pitch since re-joining the Red Devils.

The Portuguese star has helped himself to four goals already, including two on his debut in the 4-1 win against Newcastle.

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Rafael won three Premier League titles in the seven years he spent at Old Trafford
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Getty Images)

And Ole Gunnar Solskjaer revealed before the recent game against West Ham that Ronaldo is already influencing the squad’s younger players in training.

“Cristiano has come exactly as we hoped, he knows Man United, he’s been here before, same with Tom Heaton,” said Solskjaer.

“The two of them know the culture, they know what we do, they’ve learnt it here, they’ve come back and they’ve given these young boys glimpses of what you can have in your career.

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Cristiano Ronaldo completed his sensational return to United on deadline day


Craig Mercer/MB Media/Getty Images)

“They talk to them about their own previous experiences. How we do things here is within the walls and you have to experience it to be able to pass it on, with the career Cristiano has had of course Anthony, Mason, Marcus for that matter, Anthony Martial as well, still young players and they can learn off the best.

“They know the expectations and the circus and everything that happened before the Newcastle game, Cristiano handled it well and the other players handled it really well. It’s what we do. Good players come in and you learn from them but you still want to take their place.”

United continued their impressive start to the new Premier League campaign on Sunday when they beat West Ham 2-1 at the London Stadium, thanks to a late winner from Jesse Lingard.

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