insists Portugal’s squad is ‘too united to be broken by external forces’ amid reports he was ready to walk out on his teammates.
The 37-year-old arrived in following his acrimonious departure from and his reputation has taken a further pummeling over the course of the last fortnight.
following his penalty against Ghana, it has been downhill ever since.
, before his reaction to getting substituted in the defeat against South Korea landed him in hot water with manager Fernando Santos.
Ronaldo was subsequently dropped for the last 16 tie against Switzerland earlier this week and although he made a cameo appearance as a late substitute, his dissatisfaction was evident again when he made an early exit and walked down the tunnel while the rest of his colleagues celebrated with the Portugal fans who had made the long trip to Qatar.
Portugal made light work of the Swiss with Ronaldo’s replacement, 21-year-old Goncalo Ramos becoming the first player to score a hat-trick in a World Cup knockout game since 1990.
The now former United star is unlikely to retain to his place for the quarter-final against Morocco and Wednesday it was reported he refused to train with the rest of Portugal’s second string players.
claimed such was Ronaldo’s annoyance that we was ready to give up on his World Cup dream, .
‘News released on Thursday claims Cristiano Ronaldo threatened to leave the national team during a conversation with national coach Fernando Santos,’ read the statement. ‘The FPF wants to clarify that at no time did national team captain Cristiano Ronaldo threaten to leave the national team during the tournament in Qatar.
‘Cristiano Ronaldo continues to build on his unique record of service to the national team, which should be respected and which attests to his unquestionable degree of commitment to the national team.’
The statement added: ‘The national team – players, coaches and the FPF structure – are fully committed and enthusiastic, as has been the case since day one, to building what we hope will be Portugal’s best ever World Cup.’
Ronaldo has since followed up with message of his own on Instagram in which he was keen to stress the team spirit which remains strong amid so much focus on his own personal plight.
‘This group is too united to be broken by external forces. A nation too brave to be intimidated by any adversary.’
‘This is a true team, that will fight for the dream until the end.’
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