Portugal boss Santos unhappy at Ronaldo reaction to substitution

  • World
  • Tuesday, 06 Dec 2022

DOHA, Dec. 5 (Xinhua) -- Portugal manager Fernando Santos said Monday he was left unhappy by Cristiano Ronaldo's attitude after being substituted off in the team's 2-1 loss to South Korea in their final 2022 World Cup group match.

Ronaldo was heard shouting obscenities toward the Portugal bench after he was replaced by Andre Silva in the 65th-minute of the match at Education City Stadium in Doha on Friday.

"Yes, I did not like it, not at all," Santos told reporters ahead of Portugal's round of 16 match against Switzerland on Tuesday. "I really did not like it and from that moment on that issue is finished," he added.

Ronaldo explained after the match that his outburst was directed at a South Korea player who had told him to leave the pitch quickly.

After scoring in Portugal's World Cup opener against Ghana, Ronaldo drew blanks in his team's final two group-stage games against Uruguay and South Korea.

The 37-year-old, who is currently without a club after leaving Manchester United by mutual consent last month, is no guarantee of starting against the Swiss.

When asked to comment on press reports in Portugal that Ronaldo would begin the game on the bench, Santos replied:

"I do not read this type of information. I am focused on my team. We are focusing on training and not paying attention to any polls," Santos said. "What I have always done is focus on the immediate match. I am not worried if information is right or wrong."

Ranked ninth in the world, Portugal are aiming to reach the last eight of the World Cup for the first time since 2006.

"There has been a long hiatus.... what matters is this match," Santos said. "Portugal always have the obligation to win.

"For us it is good to feel this pressure. We want it and we really want to win. After each game, if you win the game you are closer to being a favorite," he added.

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