When people question your honour, it hurts, says Cristiano Ronaldo
Portuguese football superstar Cristiano Ronaldo breaks his silence on rape allegations; says he is proud to have proven his innocence
Lisbon: Cristiano Ronaldo told Portuguese television on Tuesday that "2018 was the most difficult year on a personal level." Ronaldo had to deal with rape allegations last year after former model Kathryn Mayorga filed a complaint in September alleging she was sexually assaulted by the footballer in 2009 in a Las Vegas hotel room.
The case was dismissed in a Nevada court in June, though the filing did not say if Ronaldo had agreed a settlement. He denies the accusation, although he has reportedly acknowledged that he paid Mayorga in an earlier settlement.
"When people question your honour, it hurts," he said on Tuesday. "It hurts a lot mainly because I have a big family, a wife and an intelligent child who understands a lot of things. This is a case I'm not comfortable expressing myself on. But once again, my innocence has been proven. It makes me proud," said the Juventus and former Manchester United and Real Madrid star.
Ronaldo dropped hints that he could end his illustrious career as early as next year. The Portugal football superstar, who plies his trade for Italian Serie A champions Juventus, is 34 years old now.
"I don't think about that," Ronaldo said when asked about his retirement plans. "Maybe I can finish my career next year...but I can also play up to 40 or 41," said the five-time Ballon d'Or winner. I don't know. What I always say is to enjoy the moment. The gift is excellent and I have to continue to enjoy it."
Ronaldo, who has shattered almost every record in the game, said there aren't many footballers who have more milestones to their name than him. "Are there any football players who have more records than me?" he asked. "I don't think there are any footballers who have more records than me."
Ronaldo helped Juventus win the Serie A last season by scoring 28 goals in 43 games in all competitions. The forward has a record five Champions League titles (four with Real Madrid and one with Manchester United) to his name along with three Premier League crowns, two La Liga trophies, and a Serie A title.
Sign up for all the latest news, top galleries and trending videos from Mid-day.comSubscribe
Masterclass with Former National champion Kamlesh Mehta