With Cristiano Ronaldo’s move from Real Madrid heavily mooted, the club’s president Florentino Perez has told reporters the situation is “all very strange”.
Sources claim Ronaldo feels he has been “treated unfairly by Spain’s tax authorities, whose persecution has made him determined to leave Real Madrid and the country”.
Criticism too has highlighted a ‘lack of support’ from the club.
But Perez insists he is right behind the star player.
“I will defend (Ronaldo) at all costs as both a player and as a person”, Perez told Entertaining and Sports Programming Network (ESPN), adding that he has “complete confidence” that Ronaldo has “always wanted to fulfill his fiscal commitments”
“There must be some sort of confusion which will be clarified”, he added, stressing: “I’m sure Cristiano wouldn’t want us to pay his fine if there was one — he’s not like that. If he’s angry it’s because he feels unjustly treated.
“I’ve been affected by how the Cristiano news has been treated by the media”, the club’s president continued. “The presumption of innocence has not been respected. The only thing I know is that he’s angry about the treatment the media have given him. (Ronaldo’s agent Jorge) Mendes called me and told me that.”
Questions now range from “where to next?” – with some media sources suggesting a return to Manchester United – while Spanish fans have launched a petition calling for Ronaldo’s tax debt to be pardoned, so that he stays playing for Real Madrid.
All that is certain is that Ronaldo signed a new deal with the club “only in November, and is under contract until 2021”.
The star is currently representing Portugal in the Confederations Cup in Russia, with the country’s game against the host nation going ahead tomorrow.