Gary Neville, a former player for Manchester United, has called on Cristiano Ronaldo to stop pouting after being benched for Portugal's 6-1 victory over Switzerland on Monday.
The 37-year-old's behavior was called "petulant" by Neville, who also cautioned that his career was rapidly coming to an unsavory end.
Ronaldo only came on for about 17 minutes to the end of Portugal’s World Cup Round of 16 clash on Tuesday.
It was the first time since Euro 2008 that the former Juventus and Real Madrid man had not started in a major international tournament.
Although manager Fernando Santos said it was only a strategic approach to the game, the decision may not be unconnected with the 37-year-old’s fallout with the coach.
Ronaldo had fallen out with Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag earlier this season. He also had issues at Juventus.
And on Tuesday, Neville provided a brutal assessment of his former Manchester United teammate on ITV.
Neville said that when Ronaldo had issues with Erik ten Hag at Manchester United, people suggested that the Dutch boss was trying to make a move on the superstar and was trying to establish his authority.
"This is a manager [Santos] who’s had an unbelievable relationship with Cristiano Ronaldo for eight years,” he said on ITV.
The former Manchester United captain accused Ronaldo’s fans of failing to tell him the truth, insisting that the 37-year-old needs to listen to the truth, “that it’s becoming a little bit of a scruffy end” to his career.
“The petulance, the stomping around, the sulking, it’s got to stop because it doesn’t reflect well on him at all.”
The former England international warned that the Portuguese had set for himself a long-term legacy, which he has protected as “one of the great all-time players."
“Is the Juventus manager wrong?" Is the Manchester United manager wrong? And now, is the Portugal manager wrong?
“There are three of them that have done the same thing with him.”
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