The former Manchester United man has been poor in front of goal in recent weeks, and the ex-Blaugrana chief believes he has reached the end of the road in Madrid
Former Barcelona president Joan Laporta believes the time is right for Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo to leave the Santiago Bernabeu.
A run of three goals in his past seven Madrid matches heading into Saturday’s home Clasico against Barca in La Liga represents a meagre return by the 30-year-old’s imperious standards.
Links with a move to Paris Saint-Germain and the promotion of a biopic documenting Ronaldo’s career have come amid reports of a strained relationship with Madrid president Florentino Perez over recent weeks.
Laporta, who is reported to boast a close friendship with Ronaldo’s influential agent Jorge Mendes, said the forward has reached a stage where he must consider his options.
“I’m not surprised about all this with Cristiano,” he told AS.
“He’s a player at a point in his career when he has to start asking himself these questions.
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“The market is up, it’s a good moment to make a move with all the money in the Premier League, that might encourage a few clubs.
“He’s been at Real Madrid for years and perhaps he’ll find another path.
“Players look for better contracts, the market is there for a move and Cristiano is at the right age for it.”
Laporta added that Barca’s in-form attacker Neymar is operating on the same world-class level as Ronaldo, while he backed his club to return from the Bernabeu with a six-point lead over their rivals at La Liga’s summit.
“I think Barca will win, we have the better team,” he said. “We always play well there, it’ll be a great game and we’ll win.
“Barca come into the game in better shape, our forwards are in a state of grace and if Leo [Lionel Messi] comes back [from injury] on top of that then we’re looking good.”