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Inter owner opens way for possible Ronaldo return

Written by: Staff

ROME, Mar 17 (Reuters) Inter Milan owner Massimo Moratti has opened the way for a possible return to the Serie A club by Real Madrid striker Ronaldo.

Last month the former World Player of the Year sparked speculation that he was preparing to move when he said he felt unloved by Real's fans.

''If he is still strong, athletically and mentally, and we believe he can play well with (striker) Adriano, we will think about it,'' Moratti was quoted as saying in La Gazzetta dello Sport today.

Ronaldo played for Inter for five years before joining the Spanish giants in 2002.

Furious Inter fans accused him of walking out on the club that had stood by him for two years while he recovered from the serious knee injury he suffered against Lazio in April 2000.

In the past three seasons Inter fans have displayed banners warning Ronaldo to stay away from Milan.

Moratti had previously ruled out a possible return but is now taking a softer line.

''It's a practical and sporting question, not an emotional one,'' he said.

''Besides, I'm not a man that holds a grudge and I've always liked Ronaldo personally. I've never forgotten the past.

''He was enormously successful as an image for our club. With him on the pitch we won the UEFA Cup (in 1998) and twice came close to winning the Serie A title.'' If Ronaldo decides to leave Real, Inter would not be the only Serie A club interested in him.

Last month AC Milan vice-president Adriano Galliani said ''the doors were open'' for him to join Inter's city rivals.

Reuters DH DS1605

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