Cristiano Ronaldo, substitute in the 2022 World Cup finals that Portugal beat Switzerland (6-1), praised the Seleçao’s “unity” on social media Thursday, after the Portuguese Federation denied it. He threatened to leave Qatar.
Commenting on a photo of him and his teammates celebrating a goal, ‘CR7’ wrote: “A group too united to be pulled apart by outside forces. A nation too brave to be intimidated by an opponent. A team in the truest sense of the word, fighting for its dream Till the end! Believe with us! Go to Portugal! »
Agence France-Presse journalists indicated that the striker then trained on his team’s substitutes for the quarter-final match against Morocco on Saturday. Defender Rubén Dias was only missing, a spokesman said, as he was doing specific internal work.
Shortly before that, the federation confirmed in a press release that “at no time has the captain of the national team, Cristiano Ronaldo, (had) threatened to leave the national team” during a “conversation with Fernando Santos, the national coach”.
Asked about the words of his illustrious teammate at a press conference, midfielder Ottavio said they were “completely fair”. “Nothing that comes from outside can separate us. We are very united and focused on playing for Portugal and winning.”
“There was no discussion of his departure” in the team, Ottavio continued. “It’s all normal, there was no argument or anything like that. It’s completely normal to feel a little bit bitter when you’re not playing, but that’s it.”
“heart and soul”
“If you look at the pictures, you will see that Cristiano’s heart and soul is with the national team, whether he is playing or not,” he insisted.
The FPF’s denial came in response to an article published by Portuguese sports daily Record Record, which wrote on Thursday that “Cristiano Ronaldo has threatened to leave”.
According to a record, the 37-year-old had a heated exchange with his manager after learning he was going to start on the bench against Switzerland, prompting him to threaten to leave selection, before changing his mind and calming down.
“The degree of commitment of the most capped player in Portugal’s history was proven once again – if need be – in the victory over Switzerland, in the round of 16 of the 2022 World Cup,” writes the FPF so far.
Ronaldo, who had not been substituted since 2008, entered the selection, in the 75th minute, without affecting the match. At the end of the match, he greeted the fans briefly before heading to the dressing room.
After the match, “CR7” received the support of his relatives and, in particular, his partner Georgina Rodriguez.
“As the 11 players sang the anthem, all the goals were towards you. What a shame I didn’t get to enjoy the best player in the world for 90 minutes. Fans kept calling for you and shouting your name,” she wrote on Instagram.