Cristiano Ronaldo spoke of feeling “like a broken man” after Portugal were eliminated from World Cup 2010 by a 1-0 defeat to Spain.
“I feel completely disconsolate, frustrated and an unimaginable sadness,” Ronaldo told reporters. The Real Madrid winger scored 33 goals for his club last season but could not reproduce his form for Portugal, scoring just one goal in the tournament.
Ronaldo also spoke out in support of coach Carlos Queiroz, Alex Ferguson’s former number two at Manchester United, whose tactics left Ronaldo increasingly isolated up front against Spain, prompting the winger, Portugal’s captain, to rebuff tactical questions after the match with a curt “Ask Queiroz.”
Ronaldo was criticised at home, with Portuguese media believing his conduct to be unacceptable behaviour for the country’s captain. “When I said put the question to the coach, it is just because Carlos Queiroz was holding a press conference,” he explained. “I was not in a position to explain what was what. I am a human being, and like any human being I suffer and I have the right to suffer alone.
“I know that I am the captain, and I have always assumed and will assume my responsibilities.”