Cristiano Ronaldo’s girlfriend voices anger over his World Cup axing by Portugal
8 December, 2022, 10:10 am
Ronaldo’s girlfriend Georgina Rodriguez has vented her frustrations at his World Cup axing.
The superstar was benched by Portugal coach Fernando Santos for the 6-1 win over Switzerland, only coming on for the final 20 minutes and making little impact. Adding to his woes was his young replacement Goncalo Ramos scoring a remarkable hat-trick.
Model Rodriguez watched the match from a corporate box high in the stands. She noted that while the national anthems were sung, most of the photographers were busy taking shots of Ronaldo on the bench, rather than focussing on the starting eleven.
She took to Instagram to congratulate Portugal on the win that sends them into the quarterfinals, but did so in defense of her boyfriend.
“What a shame we didn’t get to enjoy the best player in the world for the 90 minutes. The fans haven’t stopped claiming you and screaming your name,” she wrote.
“I hope God and your dear friend Fernando (Santos) hold hands and make us shake one more night.”
The intrigue now is whether Santos will pick Ronaldo for the quarterfinal against upstarts Morocco on Monday (NZT).
Ronaldo’s axing came after Santos admitted he was angry at Ronaldo’s sulky reaction to being pulled off the field early in the last pool match, a 2-1 loss to South Korea.
The 37-year-old might not have helped himself again with his post-game reaction after the win over Switzerland.
This was one of Portugal’s greatest wins – indeed, it was the country’ largest margin of victory in a World Cup knockout game – and it felt like Ronaldo could hardly get off the field quick enough.
He trudged off alone while the rest of the players hung around on the field to celebrate and acknowledge their fans.
Gary Neville, Ronaldo’s former team mate at Manchester United – the English super club he has left after similarly petulant behaviour and frustrations with their new coach Erik Ten Hag – was critical of him.
Neville felt Ronaldo was ruining his reputation late in his career and saw Santos’ no-nonsense actions as telling.
Neville told World Cup broadcaster ITV: “Well what happened at United, the suggestion was, it was because Ten Hag was trying to make a move on him, he’s trying to establish his authority.
“This is a manager [Santos] who’s got an unbelievable relationship with Cristiano Ronaldo for eight years.
“The petulance, the stomping around, the sulking it’s got to stop because it doesn’t reflect well on him at all.”