The Sweeper: Ronaldo in line for £40m Nike deal

The Real Madrid man will be tied to the company for years, while Man Utd pay £5m in severance fees, Premier League clubs snub Mohamed Salah, and Sir Alex Ferguson breaks records

The ink has only just dried on his record breaking Real Madrid contract, but Cristiano Ronaldo is set for another mega payday with a £40 million boot deal with Nike due to be signed in the next few months, The Sweeper can reveal.

The Ronaldo money mountain, bolstered by the £285,000-a-week after tax contract he penned last week, is set to be increased further by a new five-year-deal the American sportswear giants are currently drawing up.

The 28-year-old currently earns £5m-a-year from the deal he signed back in 2010 and Nike are hopeful of tying the Portuguese superstar to a new deal before next summer’s World Cup finals in Brazil, ahead of which they have already designed a new range of boots.  

Industry sources have insisted Ronaldo's new deal could see him earn up to £8m a year for the next five seasons, meaning he would remain a global ambassador within the Nike family for years to come, similar to the likes of tennis legend John McEnroe and basketball icon Michael Jordan.

- Paul Clennam


Winger Mohamed Salah caught the eye with his star display in Basel's shock Champions League victory at Chelsea on Wednesday night.

The 21-year-old Egyptian is regarded as one of the hottest properties in European football and caught the eye in Basel's domestic and European campaigns last season.

Indeed, at least two Premier League clubs could have signed Salah in the summer transfer window but baulked at the £10m asking price.

If he continues to produce performances like Wednesday night, that price will end up looking like a snip. 

- Greg Stobart


Manchester United were forced to pay out nearly £5m to release their backroom staff during the summer.

The club filed their annual accounts on Thursday and much of the headlines were about record revenues of £363.2m.

But hidden under 'exceptional items' were the severance packages they also had to settle following the retirement of Sir Alex Ferguson last season.

First team coaches Rene Meulensteen and Mike Phelan are understood to have walked away with around £2m each and goalkeeping coach Eric Steele a further £500,000.

The remainder of the £6.2m in exceptional items went in professional advisory fees relating to the IPO float in the United States last year.

- Paul Clennam

Sir Alex Ferguson might have disappeared into the Manchester United shadows but his public profile will be as high as ever over the coming months.

His new autobiography, 14 years since the last one, is out on 24 October, with a press conference the previous day to launch it and a tour featuring theatre and music hall dates in Manchester, Glasgow, London, Aberdeen, Preston and Dublin.

Publishers Hodder & Stoughton have revealed that the former United manager’s appearance at Salford’s Lowry Theatre was “the fastest-selling event in the theatre’s history”.

All 1,700 tickets sold in under four minutes, with similarly frenetic ticket activity replicated at the other venues. Only the Clyde Auditorium in Sir Alex’s native Glasgow has a few seats left to sell, with every ticket including a signed copy of the book.

The autobiography is said to have earned Sir Alex an advance of £2m.

- Wayne Veysey


New Fulham owner Shahid Khan promised not to rebrand the club as the Jaguars shortly after taking over from Mohamed Al Fayed at Craven Cottage.

But The Sweeper understands that the close geographical links between Fulham and his NFL franchise Jacksonville Jaguars, who will play at least one regular season game at Wembley for the next four years, was pivotal in him buying the Premier League club.

The Pakistan-born billionaire is believed to have assessed the viability of a number of London clubs before intermediaries alerted him to the possibility that Al Fayed was willing to end his 16-year ownership of Fulham.

Having acquired the foothold in the Premier League that he was seeking, Khan has begun exploring commercial and marketing tie-ups between his football and NFL organisations.

However, sources say there is no immediate prospect of an increase in Fulham’s transfer or player salary budget as the club continue to operate within its financial means.

- Wayne Veysey


Tottenham have been encouraging many of their former players to step into coaching at their training centre in Enfield.

With the likes of Les Ferdinand, Tim Sherwood and Steffen Freund already on the club's coaching staff, legends including Teddy Sheringham and David Ginola have been using Spurs' facilities at Hotspur Way.

But while Ginola expects to finalise his coaching qualifications next year, Sheringham has abandoned his foray into coaching and management at the first hurdle.

The former England striker has informed Tottenham he will not pursue his coaching badges and will instead enjoy his retirement and focus on punditry and hobbies including golf and poker.

- Greg Stobart