An angry Cristiano Ronaldo has issued a lengthy riposte to speculation surrounding his future, after the Juventus star was linked with a host of moves in recent days – including a possible switch to join Lionel Messi at PSG.
Ronaldo is under contract at Juve until the summer of 2022 but the rumor mill has kicked into overdrive this summer.
Reports have claimed that the 36-year-old could join fellow icon Messi in Paris, return to Real Madrid, or even switch to Manchester City after his agent Jorge Mendes supposedly tried to offload the forward to the Premier League champions.
But the five-time Ballon d’Or winner has now hit out at the gossip, labeling it “disrespectful” to all concerned.
“Anyone who knows me is aware of how focused I am on my work. Less talk and more action, this has been my guiding motto since the start of my career,” read a post to Ronaldo’s 328 million Instagram following, along with an apt image of the star making a ‘shush’ gesture.
“However, in view of everything that’s been said and written recently, I have to set out my position,” added the forward.
“More than the disrespect for me as a man and as a player, the frivolous way that my future is covered in the media is disrespectful to all the clubs involved in these rumors, as well as to their players and staff.
“My story at Real Madrid has been written. It’s been recorded. In words and numbers, in trophies and titles, in records and in headlines. It’s in the Museum at the Bernabeu Stadium and it’s also in the minds of every fan of the club.
“And beyond what I achieved, I remember that in those nine years I had a relationship of deep affection and respect for ‘merengue afición’, an affection and respect that I retain to this day, and that I will always cherish. I know that the true Real Madrid fans will continue to have me in their hearts, and I will have them in mine.
“As well as this most recent episode in Spain, there have been frequent news and stories associating me with a number of clubs in many different Leagues, with nobody ever being concerned about trying to find out the actual truth.
“I’m breaking my silence now to say that I can’t allow people to keep playing around with my name. I remain focused on my career and in my work, committed and prepared for all the challenges that I have to face. Everything else? Everything else is just talk.”
Earlier this week, Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti had been forced into the rare step of taking to social media to shoot down claims that he could be reunited with a player with whom he won the Champions League during his previous spell at the Bernabeu giants.
“Cristiano is a Real Madrid legend and he has all my love and respect. I have never considered signing him. We look forward,” wrote the Italian on Twitter.
According to transfer guru Fabrizio Romano, Juventus are keen to retain Ronaldo for at least the last year of his contract and have not received any formal offers for the forward.
Ronaldo, however, is not said to be in talks to extend his deal with Juventus – the club he joined for around €100 million in the summer of 2018 after leaving Real as a four-time Champions League winner with the Spanish giants and Los Blancos’ all-time top scorer.
Juventus begin their Serie A campaign at Udinese on August 22, as the Turin club aim to reclaim the title they relinquished to Inter Milan last season, having won the Scudetto for the previous nine years in a row.
Juve have Max Allegri back in the dugout after he returned to replace Andrea Pirlo, who was sacked after a single season in charge which yielded the Coppa Italia title but a disappointing fourth-place finish in the league as well as an exit at the last-16 stage in the Champions League.