Well Florentino Pérez has gotten his wish. Despite winning the Champions League in four of the past five seasons, Real struggled domestically, finishing 17 points behind champions Barcelona last season.
Perez has already gotten rid of manager Zinedine Zidane, replacing him with former Spain boss Julen Lopetegui.
Now Perez needs to find a Galácticos, or two, to replace Ronaldo at the box office, and just as importantly. someone to replace his 40+ goals a season.
Who will that be?
Italian football expert James Horncastle told BBC Radio 5 live: ”
Real would be reluctant to lose Ronaldo without a replacement in hand. They have been linked with Neymar, who joined PSG for a world record fee last season, and their flirting with the Brazilian appears to have put Ronaldo’s nose out of joint at Madrid.
“We don’t know who is being lined up, be it Kylian Mbappe, Eden Hazard or Harry Kane.”
Lets take a look at the four biggest names on Real Madrid’s shopping list:
The obvious choice and the one the club want. He fills the void on the pitch but, just as importantly for Real Madrid president Florentino Perez, he fills it off the pitch too.
Not since the purchase of David Beckham in 2003 would Madrid have such a commercial coup. No one would sell more shirts and the marketing kick-on would go some way to paying for him.
The fans are not as convinced by the former Barcelona man. They are not crazy about the ego, and the constant speculation around who he might want to play for next.
They love a showman, and those reservations would disappear once the goals started flying in.
Currently lighting up the World Cup and anyone with half a good eye for a player knows he will be giving Ballon d’Or acceptance speeches before he’s Neymar’s current age.
The marketing benefits are not the same however, which is why Perez still prefers Neymar.
He grew up with Ronaldo posters on his wall so it’s likely he’ll wear the white shirt at some point. It may come down to when he thinks it’s best to do that.
Madrid wanted him last year but he opted for PSG because he didn’t believe he would be first choice at the Bernabeu.
He could be persuaded otherwise now but only if Madrid give up on Neymar, which does not look like happening.
He is an easier option than the previous two and could even come this season with someone else following in 2019.
Hazard would do very different things to Ronaldo so would not have the weight of comparison.
He might disappoint supporters, unless of course he dumps Mbappe out of the World Cup, and then wins it.
He may arrive this summer while Real Madrid wait a year for Neymar.
Would have the best chance of matching Ronaldo’s goals haul and would have no problem dominating the Bernabeu.
There are reports that Real Madrid offered Spurs €150m plus Gareth Bale for Harry Kane but Daniel Levy said no.
Daft Madrid fans would also be critical if all he did was score goals with no added frill. They said the same of Michael Owen: ‘All he does is score goals!’
Who do you think will replace Ronaldo at Real Madrid?