Ronaldo releases cryptic social media message after Portugal's World Cup exit: 'Pain, uncertainty and constant work'
- All-time great released by Manchester United
- Suffered quarter-final defeat at Qatar 2022
- Mulling over his options ahead of next move
WHAT HAPPENED? The Portuguese superstar currently finds himself without a club having been released from a lucrative contract at Manchester United as a free agent. He did have international action to distract him when that big decision was taken at Old Trafford, but a painful quarter-final exit was endured at the 2022 World Cup and the 37-year-old must now decide what his next move is going to be – with there plenty of rumours to suggest that he is ready to accept a big-money offer from Saudi Arabia.
WHAT THEY SAID: While continuing to play cards close to his chest, Ronaldo has said in an Instagram post: “3 aspects of reality – pain, uncertainty and constant work.”
THE BIGGER PICTURE: While Ronaldo’s work ethic has never been in question, pain appears to be a reference to Portugal’s shock defeat to Morocco at Qatar 2022 and uncertainty a nod towards his future. The five-time Ballon d’Or winner said in the wake of more World Cup woe in the Middle East – having found himself dropped to the bench: “Winning a World Cup for Portugal was the biggest and most ambitious dream of my career. Fortunately I won many titles of international dimension, including Portugal, but putting our country's name on the highest foot in the World was my biggest dream. I fought for it. I fought hard for this dream. In the 5 appearances I scored in World Cups over 16 years, always by the side of great players and supported by millions of Portuguese, I gave my all. Leave it all out on the field. I never turned my face to the fight and I never gave up on that dream. Sadly yesterday the dream ended. It's not worth reacting to heat. I just want you all to know that much has been said, much has been written, much has been speculated, but my dedication to Portugal has not changed not for a moment. I was always one fighting for the objective of all and I would never turn my back on my colleagues and my country. Not much more to say for now. Thank you Portugal. Thank you Qatar The dream was nice while it lasted…”
IN THREE PHOTOS:
WHAT NEXT? Ronaldo will take in a break on the back of his endeavours with Portugal, but will be eager to make a decision on his next club as quickly as possible so that a new chapter in his remarkable career can be opened as 2023 is welcomed in.