Cristiano Ronaldo’s strong Irish ties after completing sensational Manchester United move

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Cristiano Ronaldo will be one of the greatest to ever play football, and he has just completed a sensational return to Manchester United.

After signing 17 years after arriving at Old Trafford, the legendary striker may well end his playing days with the club that has helped him become one of the best in the world.

And as many Irish fans celebrate his return, we took a look at the Portuguese star’s close ties to Ireland:

Debut at Real Madrid



Cristiano Ronaldo was shot down by a tackle from Pat Flynna at Tallaght Stadium in 2009

After completing his world record transfer to Real Madrid, Ronaldo dreamed of making his bow to Los Blancos at the Santiago Bernabau.

In fact, his debut for the Spanish giants took place at the Tallaght Stadium in a friendly against Shamrock Rovers on July 20, 2009, ensuring that Ireland will forever be a part of his Madrid legacy.

Try your hand at hurling



While in Dublin for the friendly match with the Hoops, someone managed to convince him to take a howl and a sliotar at the Carton House Hotel.

He may be one of the biggest stars in the sport in the world, but the forward was certainly not ready for a game of hurling as he struggled to come to terms with the traditional Irish game.

First international treble




Another fact that connects Ronaldo to these shores is that he scored his first international treble in Belfast.

This happened during Portugal’s 2014 World Cup qualifier against Northern Ireland at Windsor Park in September 2013, with Cristiano helping his country to a 4-2 victory.

Conor McGregor



Cristiano Ronaldo and Conor McGregor
Cristiano Ronaldo and Conor McGregor

The 36-year-old is a huge fan of UFC star Conor McGregor and the couple are believed to be good friends.

Not only is Ronaldo following Notorious’ career, he’s also a fan of his trainer John Kavanagh.

Ryanair gave its name to a plane



Ryanair plane (stock)

After the success of Euro 2016, the Irish low cost airline Ryanair decided to pay tribute to the Portuguese ace.

They had one of their planes renamed in honor of CR7 and even fitted it with a new “Ryanaldo” logo.

Roy Keane



Roy Keane and a young Cristiano Ronaldo

Probably his defining link with Ireland, Cristiano Ronaldo learned from the best at Manchester United.

For his first two seasons with the Red Devils, he shared a dressing room with none other than United and Ireland legend Roy Keane.

One of the greatest Irish players of all time, CR7 surely learned a lot from Keano’s side.

First game after signing for United

Ronaldo’s first game since signing again for the Red Devils is set to play for his country against, you guessed it, Ireland.

The Boys in Green face Portugal in Faro on September 1.

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