Cristiano Ronaldo, the Real Madrid superstar is coming off one of the most incredible years in sports history. He has won ten trophies, an unheard-of amount. Here they are in chronological order: UEFA Champions League 2016, European Championship, UEFA Best Player in Europe, Ballon d’Or, FIFA Club World Cup, FIFA Club World Cup Golden Ball, FIFA ‘The Best’ Men’s Player, Portugal Player of the Year, La Liga, and the UEFA Champion’s League 2017.

Wow. Portugal, Real Madrid and ultimately, Cristiano Ronaldo: take a bow.

It is an understatement to say that his request comes as a huge shock. Head coach Zinedine Zidane is a living legend himself and seemingly instantly brought back the world-renowned class of Real Madrid.

When Ronaldo moved to the Bernabeu, not many expected him to ever leave. Madrid is right next door to his home country of Portugal and houses the most prestigious football club on the planet. It seemed like a match made in heaven.

What went wrong?

Certainly, the tax-fraud allegations cannot tell the whole story. After all, fellow superstar Lionel Messi went through a similar story just a few years ago. This season, Real Madrid reclaimed the La Liga title while gaining the opportunity to three-peat as Champions League winners. If completed successfully, they would be the first club to do that since the early 1950’s. Ronaldo has the opportunity to put himself on a Michael Jordan-esque pedestal yet he is choosing to step away.

Is he opting to pursue a third straight Champions League elsewhere just to cement his legacy? Has there been a fallout with Zidane? Or has his trophy-filled last 12 months bored him and he’s simply looking for a new challenge? We may never know.

So, what's next?

One thing is for certain: his services won’t be cheap.

ESPN FC has reported that Real Madrid is expected to hold out until they receive a sum near a whopping 200 million euros for the Portuguese star. Of course, rumors have already started that he may be returning to his beloved Manchester United. The chance to not only reunite with his old club but also his former manager Jose Mourinho makes a lot of sense.

He’s still very close friends with former Manchester United skipper, Sir Alex Ferguson. On top of that all, last summer's purchase of Paul Pogba may just have sealed the deal. If Ronaldo decides to move back to Old Trafford, expect a premier league title and a Champions League to come along with him.

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