Head Coach Fernando Santos has made a surprise decision to drop Cristiano Ronaldo ahead of Portugal’s crucial Round of 16 match against Switzerland..
The 37-year-old started all three of Portugal’s opening games in Qatar, but Santos appears to be taking a different approach, opting to start Benfica striker Goncalo Ramos over Ronaldo.
This comes after whoscored.com named Ronaldo statistically one of the competition’s worst performers thus far. The former Manchester United forward’s only goal was a penalty against Ghana, which he won under dubious circumstances..
But Ronaldo had also come under fire for his on-field behavior. After being replaced against South Korea, he was seen cursing and shushing one of the opposing players who was telling him to get off the field.
“Have I seen the images?” Santos said when asked about the incident. Yes, I did not like it at all. It didn’t sit well with me. It didn’t sit well with me. But, from that point forward, everything in that matter is over. These issues are handled behind closed doors. It has been resolved. This matter is now closed, and everyone’s attention is focused on tomorrow’s match..
Santos also refused to confirm whether Ronaldo would captain the team against Switzerland, but it now appears that his final decision is to not start the striker at all.
Ronaldo had hoped that this World Cup would give him the opportunity to show potential clubs what he can still offer after his disastrous season and tumultuous departure from Manchester United, but it appears to be just another chapter in the long list of problems that have dogged his career..
Leave a Reply