Having flirted with the possibility of leaving Manchester United for Real Madrid for most of the summer, Cristiano Ronaldo today pledged to put his heart and soul into helping the Red Devils achieve further glory in 2008-09.
Portugal international Ronaldo dismayed many United by initially refusing to confirm that he wanted to stay to honour his contract at Old Trafford after being linked with Real Madrid, who made no secret of their wish to lure the winger to the Bernabeu.
But United held firm, manager Sir Alex Ferguson proved more persuasive in the end, and Real were disappointed.
The 23-year-old Ronaldo, nearing a return to action following ankle surgery, has now admitted he was 'naïve' with his comments over the summer, and confessed that if United had not beaten Chelsea in a penalty shoot-out in the Champions League final, he would not have even considered seeking a fresh challenge.
"What I said publicly, which was maybe a little bit naïve, I take total responsibility for," he told Inside United magazine.
"I just said what I thought: I have a dream of playing at Real and I thought it was time to move on. People can't be upset about me fulfilling a child-hood dream.
"I knew Real were interested in me and they had, allegedly, made a substantial offer. For a while, I wanted United to accept.
"If we hadn't been European champions, I probably wouldn't have thought about going to Madrid. I never wanted to go against United's will.
"I'm 100 per cent professional and have always given my heart and soul to this club.
"If one day I leave, I want to do it knowing I did everything I could to help the club win as much as possible."