Louis van Gaal says Cristiano Ronaldo is the type of player Manchester United need to compete with their rivals.
While the Dutchman would not be drawn on whether he thinks the Real Madrid star might return to United, he knows the Portuguese is regarded by United fans as the holy grail signing.
“I can imagine that. He is a fantastic player, I like him,” he said.
When asked if he needed that kind of player to complete his squad, he said: “Of course.”
|Cristiano Ronaldo at Manchester United|
He added: “I can give examples of champions: Bayern Munich, Ribery and Robben; Chelsea, Hazard and Willian; Real Madrid, Ronaldo and Bale; Barca, Neymar and Messi.
“Manchester United fans want us to compete with these teams.”
Winger Angel Di Maria has been linked with a move to Paris St-Germain and did not join up with United for the start of their pre-season tour of the United States.
Van Gaal added: “We still need more speed in front and also more creativity. That is why I hope Di Maria shall stay. But we don’t know that.
“Ashley Young and Juan Mata had fantastic seasons, with assists and goals but to win the Champions League you need speed also. That is why I think, maybe, we still have to buy a player with speed and creativity.”
Ronaldo is just 10 behind Spanish striker Raul’s record of 323 goals in 741 for the Bernabeu side.
|Cristiano Ronaldo at Real Madrid|