Manchester United insist Cristiano Ronaldo is not for sale and expect him to remain at the club next season.
Reports on Saturday night claimed new Chelsea owner Todd Boehly had met Ronaldo’s agent Jorge Mendes as the London club mull over a replacement for Romelu Lukaku.
Ronaldo, 37, is under contract at United until next year and the club has the option of an additional year. Although United’s failure to qualify for the Champions League cast immediate doubt on Ronaldo’s future, United anticipate Ronaldo will still be at the club when the transfer window closes.
A senior club source said: “Cristiano is not for sale. We want and fully expect him to be with us next season.”
United are preparing for a fifth Europa League campaign in the last eight seasons and Ronaldo has not played in the competition since he was a 17-year-old at Sporting Lisbon in 2002 when it was still called the Uefa Cup.
New United manager Erik ten Hag confirmed Ronaldo was in his plans at his introductory press conference last month. United want to sign a new attacker but a fluid forward rather than an out-and-out striker, with Ten Hag keen on Ajax winger Antony.
Ten Hag ideally intends to start Ronaldo through the middle next season, flanked by one of Jadon Sancho, Marcus Rashford and Anthony Elanga, as well as a new addition.
Ronaldo scored 24 goals in 38 appearances for United last season, won two Premier League Player of the Month awards, claimed a fourth Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year award and was named in the Premier League Team of the Year for the fifth time.
Mendes this week signed up United teenager Shola Shoretire, who was previously represented by the Stellar agency.