MANCHESTER UNITED could have to fork out almost Â£10 million if they want to get Cristiano Ronaldo off the books in January.
Ronaldo was axed for yesterday’s trip to Chelsea, amid claims he refused to come off the bench in last weekâs win over Spurs and looks sure to have played his last game for the club.
Yet if United hope to get rid before his contract expires at the end of the season, they are staring at pay-off touching eight figures.
Ronaldo would earn around Â£9.6m in basic wages until June, regardless of any bonus payments for league placings or trophies.
But United do have some wriggle room â not least the option of tearing up his deal if he did indeed refuse to come on as substitute and was deemed to be in breach of contract.
There is also the bargaining chip of letting him join another club for a knockdown fee or even a free â something they stood firm on last summer.
Old Traffordâs money men insisted Ronaldo, who wanted Champions League football, would only be allowed to go on their termsâ¦and that meant a fee of up to Â£20m.
Now, though, they have the option of his leaving for nothing, if a vastly reduced severance package was also part of the deal.
It would almost certainly be the case if Ronaldo, who will be 38 in February, decided on America as his next destination.
David Beckhamâs Inter Miami are keen on signing him, but although they are confident of meeting his personal terms, a transfer fee on top would make it difficult.
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Yet with Ronaldo clearly having reached the end of the road at Old Trafford, there is growing belief a deal can be done after all.
Chelsea are also looking to pounce on the opportunity and join the race for the unsettled veteran.
As revealed by SunSport in the summer, Blues ownerÂ Boehly is a huge fan of Ronaldo.
At the time, bossÂ Thomas TuchelÂ still needed convincing to press ahead with a move but now Graeme Potter is in charge at Stamford Bridge.
A Â£14m bid was being touted back then however Old Trafford bosses may take whatever they can to ship him off.
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