Patrice Evra feels that Cristiano Ronaldo should return "home" to Manchester United to ensure his talent is fully appreciated.
Ronaldo, 27, enjoyed impressive success during his six years with United, lifting eight major trophies, before signing for Real Madrid for a world-record fee of £80 million in 2009.
The Portugal international helped Real to the Liga title last season but his future has recently been the subject of conjecture amid suggestions he is unhappy at the Bernabeu.
Ronaldo is due to make his return to Old Trafford when United meet Real in the last 16 of the Champions League next year and Evra is hopeful he might one day make his comeback on a permanent basis.
"I have been in touch with him many times," Evra told MUTV. "He still loves Manchester United and misses Manchester United.
"He has done some incredible things for Real Madrid, he broke all the records, but they didn't show him the respect he deserves.
"When Ronny was here, he got the love from all the players, the manager and the fans. He is a winner. But he likes people to like him. He misses Manchester United because it was his house.
"I always say I hope he will come back because this is his home. If he wants to win the Golden Ball (Ballon d'Or) he has to come back to Manchester United."
Ronaldo is vying with Barcelona pair Lionel Messi and Andres Iniesta for the Ballon d'Or and for Evra his former team-mate should be awarded the prize.
"Ronny is an incredible player, the best in the world," he said. "He is better than Messi. It is not because he is my friend or that I played with him but he has everything.
"Messi is unbelievable but Ronaldo does it on his own. In Madrid he has to score the goals and create them. At Barcelona, Messi has Xavi and Iniesta."
Evra is eagerly anticipating facing Ronaldo in the Champions League, expressing his hope that he lines up on Real's right so they lock horns.
"I hope he plays on my side," said Evra. "He knows from training what a tough defender I am. I know how to catch him. I know he can make the difference at any time but the emotion means it will be really difficult for him."