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C. Ronaldo Banned From Mentioning Madrid

Real Madrid, the great cherry-picker of world soccer, has gotten under the skin of Manchester United Manager Sir Alex Ferguson once again. On Monday night, Ronaldo revealed that Madrid's flagrant courtship caused Ferguson to ban him from mentioning the Spanish club with reporters. "I am aware of Real Madrid's interest in me, although I can't say anything about it," Ronaldo told the Spanish paper AS.

Madrid officials, meanwhile, can't keep their mouths shut about how much admiration they have for the talented winger, whose 13 goals have helped lead Manchester United to a six-point lead over second-place Chelsea in the English Premier League. Both Pedrag Mijatovic, the club's sporting director, and President Ramon Calderon have identified 21-year old as the man to bring glory back to the Bernabeu; the Independent says a $69 million bid for Ronaldo is in the offing for this summer.

Ferguson, of course, is accustomed to the way Madrid do business. It was four years ago that rumors about David Beckham possibly moving to Madrid began to surface. After month of denials from Beckham, Real eventually landed its man.

Read the whole story at The Independent »

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