With speculation about Cristiano Ronaldo‘s future at Juventus increasing, on Saturday night his mother was seen with her son’s name on another team’s jersey.
As Dona Dolores Aveiro celebrated her beloved Sporting CP‘s late win over Tondela, she held aloft a current Sporting jersey with ‘Cristiano 7‘ emblazoned on the back.
In the video which went viral on social media, various members of the Aveiro family can be seen in jubilant mood, decked out in green and white, after the Lions increased their lead at the top of the Liga NOS table to 12 points.
Amid the celebratory scenes it is Dolores Aveiro herself who shows off the shirt with her son’s name and number on the back.
Although Cristiano has a contract in Turin until 2022, there are reports that Juventus may look to move him on this summer and a return to the club where he began his professional career may have a certain romantic appeal.
That said, finances would likely be a stumbling block as the Old Lady are said to be looking for a 29 million euro fee, which could immediately price Sporting out of the running.
However, should Ruben Amorim‘s side continue their current run and secure the Liga NOS title, the automatic Champions League qualification that goes with that could make them a more attractive option than suitors outside Europe, such as MLS teams.
Ronaldo spent six years at Sporting as a youngster, coming through the club’s famed academy and making his professional debut the season after the Lions won the title for the last time (the 2001/02 campaign).
After spending just one season in the first team – in which the defending champions finished third – before joining Manchester United, there is a sense that the 36-year-old has unfinished business in his native land.
If the finances were at all workable then there’s no doubt that Sporting‘s board would do whatever it takes to bring Cristiano home, with successive presidents doing their best to court the international superstar.
The club made him an honorary member a few years ago and recently named their youth academy after him.
Ronaldo himself has never hidden that he is a Sporting fan and neither, of course, has his mother. He has also, on occasion, returned to watch games at the Estadio Jose Alvalade.
There is another problem, though, as Sporting already have a No.7, with current incumbent Bruno Tabata joking that the Portugal international would have to ask him for it first.
“Calm down, Dona Dolores, Ronaldo still needs to ask me for the number 7,” Tabata tweeted in response to the video of Cristiano‘s mother, followed by laughing emojis.
A return to Lisbon this summer might be a longshot, but the idea has a lot going for it, and Ronaldo would certainly make his mother very happy if it were to happen.