Cristiano Ronaldo is ABSENT from Portugal training as Fernando Santos’ side prepare for their final group stage match against South Korea after confirming qualification with 2-0 win over Uruguay
Cristiano Ronaldo was absent from Portugal training on Wednesday two days before their final group stage match in Qatar.
A brace from Bruno Fernandes already confirmed Portugal’s qualification for the second round of the competition, and as a result Fernando Santos may look to rest some of his more important stars.
Cristiano Ronaldo was missing from Portugal’s training session ahead of South Korea clash
Otavio, Danilo Pereira and Nuno Mendes were also absent from Portugal training
As such his absence is not thought to be a concern for his country, and the 37-year-old was not the only one to miss out on his country’s penultimate practice session before meeting South Korea on Friday.
Porto midfielder Otavio and PSG pair Danilo Pereira and Nuno Mendes similarly missed out, with the former going through recovery work and the latter duo still recovering from their own injuries.
The Euro 2016 champions made it through to the knockout stages of the Qatar World Cup with a game to spare, following up a thrilling 3-2 victory over Ghana with the win against Uruguay on Monday.
Portugal ensured their qualification from the group stages with a game left to spare
Although he contrived a dubious penalty against Ghana and scored from the spot to become the first male player to score in five different World Cups, there was a high-profile debate over whether he managed to add to his tally against Uruguay.
The forward claimed his country’s first goal of the night, after believing he had met a Fernandes cross in the air to head past Sergio Rochet, although it later transpired he had not made any contact.
A sensor inside adidas’s Al Rihla match ball confirmed that he failed to reach the ball, and the goal was attributed to Fernandes, who claimed his second from 12 yards in injury time.
Adidas technology inside their Al Rihla ball shows that Ronaldo did not get a touch on the cross
‘In the match between Portugal and Uruguay, using the Connected Ball Technology housed in adidas’s Al Rihla Official Match Ball, we are able to definitively show no contact on the ball from Cristiano Ronaldo for the opening goal in the game,’ read an official statement from Adidas.
‘No external force on the ball could be measured as shown by the lack of ‘heartbeat’ in our measurements and in the attached graphic.
‘The 500Hz IMU sensor inside the ball allows us to be highly accurate in our analysis.’
Ronaldo wheeled away in celebration with his arm raised after scoring against Uruguay
It is yet to be seen whether he will feature against Son Heung-min’s South Korea on Friday night, with Santos likely to rest those who have featured heavily so far.
Should he take to the field, though, Ronaldo will have a chance to equal Portuguese icon Eusebio’s long-standing record of nine World Cup goals – with the 37-year-old already believing he had done so on Monday.
Cristiano Ronaldo has reportedly agreed a £173million-a-year deal with Saudi side Al Nassr
His World Cup began under the cloud of uncertainty around his future, before his contract at United was torn up following his sensational interview with Piers Morgan.
But now Ronaldo is said to have agreed a two-and-a-half year deal with Al Nassr – worth an eye-watering £173m-per-year – that will see him play until the age of 40, according to Spanish newspaper outlet Marca.
However, sources close to the Portuguese superstar insist no deal has been signed and that he remains focused on the World Cup with his country, but reports in Spain today claim the ‘dizzying figures’ have been agreed.
The Portugal international was pushing for a move away from Old Trafford in the summer, but did not get his wish as he was determined to play Champions League football, rejecting a team from Saudi Arabia in the process.
Al-Nassr are one of the most successful clubs in Saudi, having won the Saudi league nine times