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Ferguson on Cristiano: "We were lucky to have him"

In the run-up to their Champions League reunion, the Manchester United manager praised CR7 but suggested it was unlikely he would ever move back to Old Trafford.

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As.com | 22/12/2012

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has played down defender Patrice Evra's plea for Cristiano Ronaldo to rejoin him at Old Trafford, saying: "I'd love to see that it but it's fanciful thinking really. First of all, how much would it take to get him from Real Madrid and, secondly, I don't think there's any chance they would want to sell him."

However, the Scot added: "You never know. I don't know when his contract finishes. He may want to go to another club at some point in his career and I'd hope he would want to come here. But that's a long way off."

On the forthcoming Champions League meeting with his former charge, Ferguson joked: "The contract with Real says that he can't play against us - I think it will be a disgrace if he plays against us anyway. He has no loyalty to us! One thing is for sure, that he'll get a great reception when he comes to Old Trafford and quite rightly when he comes on the pitch. After that they can boo all they like."

The coach highlighted the pride felt at the Manchester club for their role in developing the player into a star, and scotched suggestions of disloyalty from the Portuguese: "I got another year out of him when he wanted to go the previous year," said Ferguson. "He honoured that and was fantastic for us. He went with our blessing. My way of looking at it is we were lucky to have him for six years and the United fans would share that."

Discussing the Madrid forward's best attributes, Ferguson highlighted his courage: "He's a brave player - all the great players you look at, they all have that. They always take the ball no matter the challenges. There are different forms of courage and that one is the best one. You've got lads who will run through a brick wall, but the courage to take the ball all the time is a fantastic courage. He always had that."

Commenting on facing José Mourinho, he said: "I've not got a great record against José and I need to put that right. We've not had a really good European game for quite a while. This is a big opportunity for United to kick on and step forward in European football again, but the main focus will centre around Cristiano."

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