“Our focus is 100 per cent on national team,” says Bruno Fernandes
Cristiano Ronaldo’s Manchester United exit was confirmed late last night
Portugal open their Qatar 2022 campaign against Ghana on Thursday
Cristiano Ronaldo and his Portugal team-mates will not be distracted from their FIFA World Cup™ mission by the storm of events surrounding the player’s future.
This was the robust message from Portugal coach Fernando Santos and midfielder Bruno Fernandes on the eve of their opening Qatar 2022 fixture against Ghana.
The timing of Ronaldo’s exit from Manchester United – confirmed late on Tuesday night – has dominated the news agenda around the Portugal camp but inside it both Fernandes, his team-mate at Old Trafford until now, and Santos insisted that the focus was on the World Cup and nothing else.
Speaking at Portugal’s pre-match press conference in Doha, Fernandes said: “I haven’t discussed anything with Cristiano Ronaldo. It’s a personal matter that he is dealing with. Our focus is 100 per cent on the national team.”
As for the impact on his own relationship with Ronaldo, the United player said: “I don’t feel uncomfortable with what is happening with Cristiano.
It was a privilege to play with him in the national team and at club level. Cristiano is a role model for me. “The World Cup means a lot for Cristiano Ronaldo,” Fernandes added.
“I’m sure he is focused on this competition. We usually create a lot of noise around things that are going on but I am sure Cristiano is focused.”