Cristiano Ronaldo's injury helped Portugal win Euro 2016 says former Barcelona star Eric Abidal
What’s the story
Cristiano Ronaldo fulfilled his lifelong dream when he won the Euro 2016 Championships in July, but now, former Barcelona star Eric Abidal has taken a swipe at the Portuguese superstar saying that his injury in the final was the main reason for Portugal’s historic triumph.
"France had a good tournament, they were unlucky because if Gignac scored, then it would have been finished, give us the trophy," Abidal said, according to Grup14.
Abidal also went on to say that Ronaldo’s absence united the squad:
"Ronaldo was out because he was injured and it was a problem for France and an advantage for Portugal. Portugal was more relaxed without Ronaldo, the players there normally play for Ronaldo but without him the team spirit is different, and there was no stress.”
In case you didn’t know...
Cristiano Ronaldo walked off in tears during the final in the 24th minute after he was injured during a clash with France’s Dimitri Payet. While many expected Portugal to struggle without their talisman, the Iberian nation dug deep and secured an amazing victory thanks to Eder’s goal in extra-time.
The heart of the matter
While Cristiano Ronaldo might have not played a major role in the final, he still played a huge role in Portugal’s campaign scoring some important goals throughout the campaign including the majestic header against Wales in the semi-final.
However, after the Real Madrid superstar’s departure, Portugal fought and fought and won the trophy thanks to Eder’s stunning strike. Abidal’s comments are sure to anger Cristiano Ronaldo and his Portuguese team-mates as well, as his team-mates have time and again spoken about Ronaldo’s importance in the Euro 2016 campaign.
While Ronaldo walked off injured during the final, he still provided inspiration to his team-mates on the sidelines. Also, Ronaldo’s contribution throughout the tournament cannot be ignored and Abidal’s controversial comments just look like a petty effort to take the sheen off Ronaldo’s spectacular year.
Cristiano Ronaldo has faced criticism from a certain section of the media and fans for being too selfish and self-centered. However, to claim that the Portugal national team won because of his absence is taking things a bit too far.Published 22 Jan 2017, 12:23 IST