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Ronaldo pledges to 'come back stronger' after knee injury

Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal's winning Euro 2016 team celebrate at a reception for their fans in Lisbon, Portugal, July 11, 2016. REUTERS/Pedro Nunes
Cristiano Ronaldo and Portugal's winning Euro 2016 team celebrate at a reception for their fans in Lisbon, Portugal, July 11, 2016. REUTERS/Pedro Nunes

(Reuters) - Cristiano Ronaldo has vowed to come back stronger for the coming season after suffering a knee injury in Portugal's triumphant Euro 2016 final earlier this month.

The Real Madrid forward, who is in this year's Best Player in Europe shortlist, was carried off the pitch on a stretcher after 25 minutes in the final against hosts France.

"I just wanted to thank all my fans," Ronaldo said in a video on his Instagram account.

"I wanted to tell them that all is well and that I will come back much stronger. Thank you, long live Portugal."

The 31-year-old, who racked up 51 goals in 48 games last season, scored the decisive penalty to seal Real's second Champions League final success over local rivals Atletico Madrid in three years.

La Liga runners-up Real begin their 2016-17 campaign, in what will be manager Zinedine Zidane's first full season in charge, away to Real Sociedad on Aug. 21.

(Reporting by Ian Rodricks in Bengaluru; Editing by Amlan Chakraborty)

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