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"Should he start?" - Portugal boss responds to Ronaldo interview ahead of World Cup opener

Chris Byfield

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"Should he start?" - Portugal boss responds to Ronaldo interview ahead of World Cup opener

Portugal boss Fernando Santos responded to Cristiano Ronaldo’s bombshell interview, ahead of the team’s World Cup opener against Ghana.

In an interview with TalkTV, the Portugal star said he feels “betrayed” by the club and has no respect for manager Erik ten Hag.

Ronaldo also criticised club owners, the Glazers, and was scathing of former teammates Gary Neville and Wayne Rooney.

The Man Utd supporters have been deeply critical of the forward’s behaviour, with some believing that Ronaldo’s Old Trafford legacy has been tarnished.

It is almost certain he will never play for Man Utd again, but has Ronaldo’s unruly behaviour affected his National team place?

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“Should he start?”

Ronaldo has been in stuttering form for Man Utd on the pitch, having only managed three goals all season.

However, for Portugal the forward remains the talisman. He became the most prolific international goal scorer of all-time last year and has netted a staggering 117 in 191 caps for A Seleção.

In light of his recent performances on the pitch, and behaviour off it, there have been questions over whether the forward should start for his national team.

When Santos was asked in a press conference on Wednesday about whether he was forced to start Ronaldo, the manager replied: "Forced? This is not about forcing me. This is not a requirement.

“No one is forced to do anything here. The question could be, you could ask me, based on what Cristiano Ronaldo did [in recent weeks on the pitch] should he start?

"This is valid for Cristiano Ronaldo and all the players who are with the national team. If the head coach is forced to put a player in the XI…there aren’t those things here."

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Football, Cristiano Ronaldo, Portugal, Football World Cup, Qatar

Chris Byfield
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