Ronaldo doesn't want to play as a No.9, claims Ferdinand

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The Real Madrid superstar's former teammate says the Ballon d'Or winner is a different kind of player than he was several years ago

Former Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand says Cristiano Ronaldo has changed his playing style since their time together at Old Trafford.

Long-time Red Devils defender Ferdinand crossed paths with the current Real Madrid star at Manchester United from 2003-2009 but has noticed that Ronaldo's style with Los Blancos and his responsibilities on the field have evolved significantly  

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"I don’t think he really wants to play as a No.9 because he can be tied down there and he can be left a bit isolated," Ferdinand said. "He likes being able to come from the wide areas where he gets a little bit of space and that’s where he can do his magic.

"But he used to stand out wide and want to get the ball and take people on. He’s not that player no more.

"He wants to get the ball in areas where he can hurt teams and have end product, which is goals or assists, and at the moment there’s no better man on the planet doing that."

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Ronaldo currently is with Portugal at the Confederations Cup, where he is tied for top scorer at the tournament with two goals.

A wave of speculation was unleashed earlier this month about the potential of Ronaldo returning to Manchester United, with the player reportedly unhappy at how Real Madrid were dealing with his tax case.

Los Blancos president Florentino Perez moved to quash speculation the player will leave the club in the following days, but the player himself has stayed mum about his future.

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