Portugal’s ex-manager Fernando Santos has revealed that Cristiano Ronaldo doesn’t talk to him anymore since he dropped him from playing xi against Switzerland in the Qatar World Cup.
The 38-year-old Al Nassr star managed to score only one goal in three group-stage starts for Portugal in the World Cup. Due to his poor performance, the then-coach Fernando Santos decided to drop him and opt for Goncalo Ramos for the clash in Group of 16 against Switzerland. However, it was a very unpopular opinion until the Paris Saint-Germain scored a hattrick and Portugal won the match by 6-1.
After such an impressive performance against Switzerland, Ramos was the first-choice striker for the team against Morocco. However, his performance against Morocco was very average, and Cristiano finally arrived in the game in the 51st minute by substituting Ruben Neves. But none of them could score a goal to equalize the game and Morocco crashed the starry Portuguese side by 1-0 and it was one of the biggest upsets in the World Cup if not the biggest.
Santos was sacked immediately after the loss and the relationship between him and Cristiano was completely broken. Santos revealed that they haven’t talked since the conclusion of the World Cup. He also added, that on the day of their final game against Morocco, when Santos came to Ronaldo to explain why he wasn’t in the starting xi, Ronaldo misunderstood him. On his feelings for Cristiano Ronaldo, Fernando Santos said, “From my side, the relationship is the same, and he continues to be like a son to me.”
Cristiano Ronaldo has rejuvenated his career under the new manager of Portugal Roberto Martinez by scoring nine goals in seven matches for the team in European Qualifiers. Despite all the controversies, Fernando Santos still believes that his decision to drop Ronaldo was a correct decision. According to him, at that time Cristiano had a barren time; even his poor form forced him to leave Manchester United.
Santos talked about Ronaldo, “He is the best in the world,” but at that time he had a very difficult patch in his career. “That moment really affected him. He had no rhythm. It was a strategic issue”- according to Santos.