Roberto Martínez has been named the new Portugal coach, and he inevitably had questions to answer about his new captain.
The 49-year-old Spaniard would take over from Fernando Santos, who stepped down after the World Cup, and already had questions to answer about Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo at his first press conference.
Roberto Martinez on Ronaldo
“Cristiano Ronaldo deserves respect after 19 years as part of the national team, we’re going to talk about it soon,” Martinez said at the Cidade do Futebol, where he was introduced as Portugal’s new coach.
“Football decisions would be made on the field. My starting decision is to meet everyone, the 26 who went to the World Cup, and Cristiano Ronaldo is part of them.”
A new coach for Cristiano Ronaldo
Ronaldo entered the World Cup for Portugal with a cloud of controversy hanging over him since his interview with Piers Morgan.
The added attention and poor performances saw him lose his undisputed position as the focal point of Portugal’s attack.
The 37-year-old unusually started just three of Portugal’s five World Cup games, none of which came in the knockout stages.
Following the World Cup disappointments, there were many suggestions that the 2016 European Championship winner would retire from the national team, but the Madeira, Portugal man remained available for the national team.
Now he would have a new coach in Roberto Martínez, who has said he deserves respect for what he has done for the national team and is eager to meet him.
Ronaldo holds the record for the most international goals scored (118). The goals delivered two trophies and many important moments for the Iberian nation.