Cristiano Ronaldo has further fueled speculation about his Juventus career by issuing a lengthy, cryptic statement on social media reflecting on the failed title bid and the achievement of his personal goals.
For weeks, Ronaldo has been linked to an exit in Turin, which was recently intensified when the 36-year-old had each of his luxury supercars transported from his mansion as a professional under the cover of darkness.
It took victory on the last weekend of the season – and for rivals Napoli to drop points – to get Juventus to finish in the top four with the skin off their teeth and secure Champions League football for next season.
Despite this, Ronaldo is ready for confrontation talks with the club, after which he could opt for a final spell elsewhere for the final years of his football career. The Instagram statement, released Monday night, has only served to keep tongues wagging.
Cristiano Ronaldo has made a lengthy statement online reflecting on the season and his personal accomplishments – leading many fans to believe he is saying goodbye.
Ronaldo finished as Italy’s top scorer, but Juve struggled and nearly missed the top four
In the cryptic 373-word address, Ronaldo wrote: ‘The life and career of every top player is made up of ups and downs.
‘Year after year we face fantastic teams, with extraordinary players and ambitious goals, so we always have to do our best to keep ourselves at the highest level.
“We couldn’t win Serie A this year, congratulations to Inter for the well-deserved title. However, I have to appreciate everything we have achieved at Juventus this season, both collectively and individually.
‘The Italian Super Cup, the Italian Cup and the Serie A Top Scorer trophy make me happy, especially because of the difficulty they carry, in a country where nothing is easy to win.
‘With these achievements I have achieved a goal that I had set for myself since the first day I arrived in Italy: to win the championship, the cup and the super cup, as well as become the best player and top scorer in this great football country. with great players, gigantic clubs and a football culture of its own.
In the post, Ronaldo cited his achievements, saying his goals were achieved in Italy
‘I have already said that I am not chasing records, but records are chasing me. For those of you who don’t understand what I mean by this, it is very simple: football is a collective game, but it is through individual victories that we help our teams achieve their goals.
“It is always looking for more and more on the field, working more and more outside the field, that records eventually emerge and collective titles become inevitable, one the natural consequence of the other.
So I am very proud of this fact that has been widely repeated in recent days: champions in England, Spain and Italy; Cup winner in England, Spain and Italy; Super Cup winner in England, Spain and Italy; Best Player in England, Spain and Italy; Best Scorer in England, Spain and Italy; More than 100 goals for a club in England, Spain and Italy.
‘Nothing compares to the feeling of knowing that I have left my mark in the countries where I have played, and that I have brought joy to the fans of the clubs I represented. This is what I work for, this is what moves me and this is what I will chase until the last day. ‘
However, it was the post’s last signing, which left many people with lingering questions, while Ronaldo openly thanked everyone who had been part of the ‘journey’, suggesting that something might be coming to an end.
He added: ‘Thank you to everyone who took part in this trip! We stand together! ‘
On Sunday, the 36-year-old was sensationally left on the bench for the crucial season player
It was the post’s last signing that left many people with lingering questions
In response, many fans were left with a similar view that Ronaldo was basically outlining a goodbye message. One user responded by accusing the Portuguese ace of trying to flee ‘a sinking ship’.
The football world was left shocked on Sunday when Ronaldo was sensationally put on the bench by under-fire manager Andrea Pirlo for Juve’s crucial season ender at Bologna.
The Portuguese talisman, who finished the season with 29 goals – five for Romelu Lukaku – to win the Golden Boot, didn’t even take to the field when Juve took a 4-1 win.
Goals came thanks to Federico Chiesa, Adrien Rabiot and an Alvaro Morata brace as Juve finished the season at a high level. Napoli’s 1-1 draw with Hellas Verona meant a Champions League place was sealed with just one point.
Ronaldo, Juve’s highest-earning star, has been contracted until next summer, although the club’s chief football officer Fabio Paratici has already said a new deal is ‘not on the agenda’.
The 36-year-old has been linked with a host of clubs in recent weeks, including an emotional return to his youth club Sporting Lisbon or an Old Trafford swan song with Manchester United.
French giants Paris Saint-Germain have also been mooted, with Ronaldo being seen as a stopgap for wanted star Kylian Mbappé.