The rumours have seemed at times ridiculous and at others merely fanciful. Over the last three or four years – in fact pretty much every summer since he left Old Trafford – there has been speculation about Cristiano Ronaldo returning to Manchester United.
It seems like the fodder of the most outrageous tabloids for many of those summers. At other times there did seem to be some strands of truth to the idea that Manchester United could make a world record move for the superb Portuguese.
This summer, and with the player having recently signed a new contract Real Madrid, the talk of him returning to Manchester United has so far been stifled. Even the most sensationalist rags haven’t bothered to stoke the fires yet.
But, in some ways, a move could be more likely this summer than at any other time.
And this is surely to be expected for a player who is reaching veteran status. He does have a ridiculous body – almost superhuman. But he is bound to start waning at some stage as he has now entered his 33rd year.
So, like Rooney to Everton, is there some possibility that Ronaldo could go back to the club where he made his name as the ultimate number 7 and the club that he loves to finish his career?
For Ronaldo himself it could be the perfect move. Because if Real Madrid do decide to dispense of his services this is a man who would be desperate to prove them wrong and to show that he is still at the top of his game.
As for Manchester United, they desperately need more cutting edge in attack. José Mourinho has built admirably from the back this season and Manchester United look extremely hard to beat. But they aren’t putting the ball in the onion bag anywhere near often enough.
Ronaldo is still a 20 to 30 goals a season man and could play on the right wing for Manchester United or up top. He is still the ultimate number seven if played on the wing and TFF thinks that Manchester United may just make a cheeky bid for him this summer, particularly if Hazard does go to the Bernabeu.
What a potential return for an idol of Manchester United and a player who is still unanimously regarded as a hero rather than a villain for leaving for Real Madrid in 2009.
A front line of Ronaldo, Mkhitaryan, Martial and Rashford would surely be able to outwit even the finest defences in Europe.
Throw Zlatan in there and you have a wonderful forward line which would surely be full of goals.
Manchester United – can you see Ronaldo returning to Old Trafford this summer or is his relationship with Jose Mourinho a stumbling block?