Following one of the most flabbergasting interviews in recent footballing history, on Wednesday Manchester United announced they had mutually terminated Cristiano Ronaldo’s contract.
The Portuguese star burnt almost every bridge he had at Old Trafford in his interview with Piers Morgan last week, criticising Erik ten Hag, the sporting department, the owners, some of the players – essentially everyone but himself.
If his goal was to force his way out of United, in that he has succeeded. However the matter has largely been a public relations disaster for the former Real Madrid striker. Many have wondered out loud how he could be so egotistical in damaging a club that he supposedly loves.
It seems an appropriate time to recall when one of his former employers – Real Madrid President Florentino Perez – attacked him for exactly that. Speaking in 2012, audio was leaked by Jose Antonio Abellan, where Perez destroys Ronaldo.
“He’s crazy. This guy is an idiot, a sick man.”
“You think this guy is normal but he’s not normal, otherwise he wouldn’t do all the things he does. The last nonsense he did, the whole world saw it. Why do you think he does these stupid things?”
Speaking about super-agent Jorge Mendes, who represents both Ronaldo and former Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho, Perez lumped the pair in the same boat.
“Mendes doesn’t control [Cristiano], just like he doesn’t control Mourinho. Zero weight. These are guys with a serious ego, both spoiled, and they don’t see reality because they could both earn a lot more money if they were otherwise inclined.”
“These two are abnormal, because we’re talking about a lot of money in respect to image rights. Also, with that face they have, that defiant way, that everyone dislikes them; if the publicity is the opposite, it’s the opposite!”
As can be seen in the final quote, Perez was likely frustrated over a financial argument. However those quotes ring particularly loudly after Ronaldo has put himself ahead of his club in the eyes of many.