Cristiano Ronaldo Failed To Score In An Open Play In Euro 2024, Is It His Last Dance with Portugal?

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Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal suffered a heartbreaking Euro 2024 quarter-final exit at the hands of France losing on penalties on Friday, June 5.

There are rumors that this could be the former Manchester United’s final appearance with the national team due to his old age (39-year-old).

Ronaldo’s performance at Euro 2024

His performance at Euro 2024 was disappointing, marking the first time he failed to score in a major international tournament.

Ronaldo has not scored in an open play at a major tournament since the 2021 Euros.

As the highest goal-scoring player, the 39-year-old had 23 shots in Portugal’s five games at Euro 2024 which is more than any other player but failed to score.

Ronaldo’s expected goals across all games in the Euro tournament is 0.692.

Meanwhile, criticism of his performance grew as he missed a penalty against Slovenia and was visibly emotional following their elimination by France.

Coach Martinez Speaks on Ronaldo’s future

Despite Cristiano Ronaldo’s struggles in front of goal, Portugal’s coach Martinez has resisted dropping him to the bench.

When the coach was asked if CR7’s journey with Portugal will end on a sad note, Martinez replied giving a contrary response.

The Portuguese boss said: “No, everything is still too raw.”

“We are still recovering from the defeat. There are no individual decisions to be made at this point.”

On the other hand, BBC Sport pundit Chris Sutton criticized Martinez for his “obsession” with Ronaldo and a “lack of imagination” in keeping him on the field.

Sutton believes that the coach is hindering the team by not utilizing other options on the bench.

In addition, Danny Murphy also added that keeping Ronaldo on the pitch while he’s not making significant impact was unprofessional.

He said: “It does seem absurd at times to keep the Al-Nassr star on when he is not making an impact.”

Their ideas could potentially be accurate suggesting that the game could have unfolded differently had a different option been chosen.

However, in light of these critiques, it is important to examine some significant accomplishments of the five-time Ballon d’Or holder.

This examination will help us assess whether or not Ronaldo deserves to carry all the criticisms among the rest of the squad.

Our verdict

Cristiano Ronaldo has had a stellar career representing Portugal in six European Championships which is the most by any player.

The Al-Nassr star also holds the record for most goals scored in the tournament with 14 goals.

In addition, Cristiano Ronaldo has participated in five FIFA World Cups and made history in Qatar as the first male player to score in five World Cup tournaments.

In the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, he scored a memorable hat-trick against Spain and became the oldest player to achieve this feat in World Cup history. In fact, many acknowledged that the match was actually Spain vs Cristiano Ronaldo.

Also, Ronaldo led Portugal to victory in the UEFA Nations League in 2019.

Ultimately, he holds the record for most international goals for Portugal with 130 and he’s the country’s most-capped player with 212 appearances.

The 39-year-old’s age may be starting to show in his performance but his unwavering determination and love for his country are truly remarkable.

Despite possibly making Euro 2024 his final appearance, the countless records he has set at both club and international levels will stand as a near-impossible challenge for any future player.

Meanwhile, rumors suggest that he is already looking ahead to the 2026 World Cup where he hopes to compete at the age of 41.

Finally, the decision of whether Euro 2024 will be Ronaldo’s last international tournament lies solely with him.

What’s next for Cristiano Ronaldo?

As it stands, the Portuguese legendary forward will be heading back to Saudi Arabia to gear up for the upcoming season with Al-Nassr.

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