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The real reason why Ruud van Nistelrooy left Man United in 2006 has finally been revealed 

The Dutch master left United under a cloud for Real Madrid

Back in 2006, Ruud van Nistelrooy was one of the Premier League’s most deadly and exciting players. 

But the Manchester United forward quickly fell out of favour at Old Trafford under Sir Alex Ferguson and promptly moved to Real Madrid when he was at the very peak of his powers.


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And nobody quite knows why.

Van Nistelrooy hit 150 goals in just 219 games for United

PA:Press Association
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Van Nistelrooy hit 150 goals in just 219 games for United

But according to former Labour spin doctor Alastair Campbell – who Fergie often confided in – Cristiano Ronaldo played some part in the Dutchman’s departure.


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Campbell’s diary, which is being serialised in the Sunday Times, says: “The last straw was when he told Cristiano Ronaldo he had found a new dad in Carlos [Queiroz, Ferguson’s assistant] – just after Ronaldo’s dad, who was an alcoholic, had died.

“Carlos asked him to show respect and he said he didn’t respect anyone there.

“He later apologised but CR was not having it.

The Dutchman’s relationship with the manager became difficult

Getty - Contributor
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The Dutchman’s relationship with the manager became difficult

“Alex sent van Nistelrooy home when he heard about it later.

“He was not sure what he was going to do with him.”

As it was Van Nistelrooy left for Real Madrid in July 2006, with Ronaldo taking over his duties in the squad.

Ronaldo replaced Van Nistelrooy as the club’s main outlet for goals soon after

Reuters
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Ronaldo replaced Van Nistelrooy as the club’s main outlet for goals soon after

It all ended well though, with the Portuguese forward forging a lethal partnership with Wayne Rooney, helping the club secure the Champions League a year later.

What’s more, he did link up with Van Nistelrooy again for one season at Real when Ronaldo made his £80million exit from Manchester.