Cristiano Ronaldo will wear the number 7 shirt at Manchester United.
The Portuguese returned to Old Trafford after 12 years long, with the Red Devils agreeing to sign him from Juventus in the last week of the transfer window.
The iconic shirt that he left in Manchester for Real Madrid’s number 9 in the summer of 2009, was already occupied by Edinson Cavani on his return.
The Uruguayan has done justice to the much-hyped jersey since his move from Paris Saint-Germain, but once Ronaldo returned for his second act, it always felt right to hand him the special number.
However, the Premier League rules state that a number can not be changed after it has already been formally assigned to another player. But United have received special dispensation from the League, and on Thursday they confirmed the new shirt numbers of both Ronaldo and Cavani.
While the all-time record goalscorer in men’s international football will don the number 7, El Matador will switch to 21 – formerly worn by Daniel James, who left for Leeds United this summer. The Uruguay international wears the same number for the national team.
Ronaldo has thanked Cavani for the gesture, stating (via MU): “I wasn’t sure if it would be possible to have the number seven shirt again. So I would like to say a huge thank you to Edi [Cavani] for this incredible gesture.”
The 36-year-old will become the seventh player to wear the Premier League giants’ number 7 shirt since he starred in it himself before moving to the Spanish capital.