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Indian cricket icon Virat Kohli backs ex-Man Utd star after World Cup disappointment

Indian cricket icon Virat Kohli backs ex-Man Utd star after World Cup disappointment

"You are the greatest."

Indian cricket icon Virat Kohli has sent a public message of support to Cristiano Ronaldo following Portugal's elimination from the football World Cup in Qatar.

Morocco beat Portugal 1-0 on Saturday to become the first African side to reach the semi-finals of the World Cup.

Defeat for Portugal means Ronaldo, 37, is set to finish his professional career without having won football's biggest trophy or even scored a knockout goal in the competition – despite having played at five tournaments.

Ronaldo started on the bench for Saturday's match but was brought on in the 52nd minute, with Portugal trailing 1-0 after Youssef En Nesyri broke the deadlock for Morocco.

But the five-time Ballon d'Or winner failed to make a major impact as Portugal were dumped out of the competition.

Kohli: You are the greatest

After the match, Indian cricket legend Kohli sent Ronaldo a message of support on social media.

"No trophy or any title can take anything away from what you’ve done in this sport and for sports fans around the world," Kohli tweeted, tagging Ronaldo.

"No title can explain the impact you've had on people and what I and so many around the world feel when we watch you play. That's a gift from god.

"A real blessing to a man who plays his heart out every single time and is the epitome of hard work and dedication and a true inspiration for any sportsperson. You are for me the greatest of all time."

Ronaldo: The dream was beautiful

Ronaldo took to social media himself on Sunday to confirm that the World Cup in Qatar was set to be his last for Portugal.

"Winning a World Cup for Portugal was the biggest and most ambitious dream of my career," he posted on Instagram."“Fortunately, I won many titles of international dimension, including for Portugal, but putting the name of our country on the highest level in the world was my biggest dream.

"I fought for it. I fought hard for this dream. In the five appearances that I scored in World Cups over 16 years, always alongside great players and supported by millions of Portuguese people, I gave my all.

"I left everything on the field. I never turned my face to the fight and I never gave up on that dream. Unfortunately, yesterday the dream ended. It is not worth reacting to heat."

He added: "I just want everyone to know that much has been said, much has been written, much has been speculated, but my dedication to Portugal has not changed for an instant.

"I was always one more person fighting for everyone's goal and I would never turn my back on my teammates and my country.

"For now, there's not much more to say. Thank you, Portugal. Thank you, Qatar. The dream was beautiful while it lasted…"

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Football, Cristiano Ronaldo, Cricket, Football World Cup, Manchester United, Portugal