Opinion: How Ronaldo’s transfer influenced on Bonucci-Higuain-Caldara swap deal
Goal's deputy features editor Mark Doyle explains How Ronaldo forced Juventus go to controversial deal
"The Portuguese superstar's signing paved the way for a remarkable piece of business that is being lauded by Milan fans but lamented by Juve supporters
"Leonardo is no stranger to outrageous proposals. He certainly took Anna Billo completely by surprise when he asked the Sky Sports Italia presenter to marry him live on TV in March 2013.
"A stunned and embarrassed Billo didn't say yes there and then; she required some convincing. However, the pair wed just six months later. The Brazilian's impressive powers of persuasion have generated headlines again this summer.
"Many Milan fans were upset when it was confirmed last Wednesday that he was to return to San Siro as the club's new sporting director.
"This, after all, was the same man who had both played for and coached the Rossoneri only to then take charge of city rivals Inter, in December 2010. Eight years may have passed but some supporters still saw that as an act of betrayal.
"However, the fan unrest has quickly dissipated, after the belated acceptance of another outrageous proposal. After just one week in his new job, Leonardo has masterminded an incredible deal that will see Gonzalo Higuain and Mattia Caldara move to Milan in exchange for Leonardo Bonucci and €18 million.
"Cristiano Ronaldo has also indirectly played his part in one of the game's most intriguing package-deals ever. The Portuguese superstar's shock summer switch to Juventus in a deal worth an overall €340 million in terms of fees and wages created a need to balance the books in Turin.
"As the Bianconeri's highest earner before Ronaldo's arrival, Higuain was always the man most likely to make way, given his exit would not only raise the most money but also allow Ronaldo to take centre stage in Turin. Essentially, it made both sporting and financial sense, as a €18 million loan fee, with a view to a permanent transfer next summer for an additional €36m, represents excellent value for a 30-year-old striker.
"Both Ronaldo and Juve feel that this will only be possible if the forward is surrounded by a team of proven performers, seasoned campaigners with a winning mentality."