August 6th, 2012. That's the day it all started.
Ronaldo: I hope to play in MLS [ESPNFC]
"(They) are in the right place. I think the soccer here, they do it the best (they) can, but it can be better. So if I can help there to be better soccer here - I they're great, they are in a good way, and I hope to come here to play one day."
And so the prophecy was written. Cristiano Ronaldo would come to MLS and lift the league on his shoulders and bring it to world prominence. Five years ago those quotes spread around the internet like a wildfire meeting a trail of gasoline.
Ever since then we've been blessed with "reports" and "rumors" about when Ronaldo would bless America with his presence. When would the king take his place upon the MLS throne?
November 28, 2012 - LA Galaxy Going After Cristiano Ronaldo [Sports Talk Florida]
And so it begins. The first club linked to Cristiano Ronaldo. The original Designated Player, David Beckham, has just left the LA Galaxy and they need a high-priced player to replace him with.
December 1, 2012 - Dream team: Beckham plans to bring Ronaldo and Messi to the MLS [Mirror]
The writing is already on the wall. Becks wants to continue the legacy he started in MLS. Only a matter of time before we see CR7 donning an MLS kit and flying first class around the country.
Unfortunately a full year passes without much smoke from the Ronaldo-to-MLS direction. That is until David Beckham announces that he intends to bring an MLS franchise to Miami, Florida. Then the rumors kick into high gear.
February 17, 2014 - Report: David Beckham aims to bring superstar Cristiano Ronaldo to Miami [NBC Sports]
There it is. Done deal. Ronaldo will join Beckham in Miami starting in 2017 and both will take MLS by storm.
March 17, 2015 - Report: Cristiano Ronaldo plans to play in MLS beginning in 2018 [MLSSoccer]
Okay. This is getting serious. The league's own website is writing about the rumors. He's 100% coming, it's only a matter of when now.
April 22, 2015 - Insider Notes: Ronaldo prefers LA in '18 [Sports Illustrated]
Well then. Not only is Ronaldo coming, he's basically narrowed it down to two teams. The LA Galaxy and expansion side LAFC. He's coming to the city of Angels! Buy your kits now!
August 12, 2015 - Report: New L.A. MLS Team Wants Cristiano Ronaldo, Wayne Rooney As Star Players [NESN]
That settles that. Sorry, Galaxy fans. Not only are LAFC getting Ronaldo but they're getting his old pal, Wayne Rooney, too.
November 7, 2015 - Cristiano Ronaldo enjoyed Manchester United spell, keen on MLS [ESPN FC]
"I'm definitely thinking about playing in the USA for a year," Ronaldo said. "I've always said living and playing there is a possibility."
Welp. Doesn't get more concrete than that, does it?
November 13, 2015 - Cristiano Ronaldo: I want to retire with 'dignity', not in USA, Qatar or Dubai [The Guardian]
"That does not mean it's bad play in the leagues of the United States, Qatar or Dubai, but I do not see myself there," Ronaldo said.
January 4, 2016 - Report: Cristiano Ronaldo considering move to Miami MLS team [Local 10]
We're back on track, baby! Except now he's going to Miami instead of LA? I guess LA will have to settle for two NFL teams instead of Cristiano Ronaldo. That's a shame...
January 16, 2016 - Ronaldo: MLS a possibility down the road [GOAL]
Ronaldo acknowledges the standard of football has improved and claimed it could tempt him to make the move when he finally decides to leave the Bernabeu.
"Maybe in the future will be a good chance for me to play there [in America]," he told GQ. "You never know, but it's something interesting. I consider it, of course, because as I've said, soccer there has become better and better. ... I think that this is maybe going to be possible."
There you have it. This is where we currently stand in the heart of Cristiano Ronaldo. He loves us, he hates us, he kinda maybe likes us and might consider playing in MLS one day. Can't wait to maybe never see you play in America, Cristiano!