Updated January 26th, 2024 at 10:06 IST

Cristiano Ronaldo criticizes Al-Nassr's China Tour organizers for unprofessional conduct - Reports

There might be another reason, why Cristiano Ronaldo declined to play in China this season as many reports state on the cancellation of the Al-Nassr's tour.

Reported by: Aryan Suraj Chadha
Cristiano Ronaldo | Image:X/screengrab
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Cristiano Ronaldo recently publicly apologised to fans in China after Al-Nassr’s tour was cancelled. It was reported that CR7 could not compete in the scheduled matches owing to an injury that would keep him out of action. Cristiano Ronaldo and his team are currently poised to play Lionel Messi’s Inter Miami on February 1, 2023. 

3 things you need to know 

  • Cristiano Ronaldo is said to face Lionel Messi next week 
  • Ronaldo ended up being the top scorer in the world in 2023 
  • Al-Nassr's tour of China ‌was cancelled 

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Was there any other reason for the China tour to be cancelled? 

According to recent reports from China News Weekly (via Shine), Cristiano Ronaldo has expressed unhappiness with the organisers of the China Tour, which he took part in alongside Al-Nassr. It was announced on January 19th that the top player had suffered an injury.

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It has been claimed that despite being aware of Ronaldo's ailment, organisers SPORT17 and GHY Culture & Media continued to promote his participation in friendly matches. Furthermore, they allegedly attempted to encourage him to play at a public gathering.

Ronaldo's participation in both games was supposedly declared by the organisers as soon as Al-Nassr arrived at Shenzhen Airport, dismissing any fears about his injury as minor pain during normal training sessions.

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However, on the eve of the game versus Shanghai Shenhua, on Tuesday night, January 23rd, the organisers announced the tour's delay. Ronaldo has apparently expressed his displeasure with the sequence of events.

An insider at GHY Culture & Media speculated that the organisers may have contrived this incident to boost ticket sales. The insider, speaking via Shine, said that this may have been a planned move by the organisers. The anonymous person said: 

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"The schedule of Al-Nassr's China tour was finalized last year and the promotion surrounding Ronaldo was also released early. But if the organizer publicly said that Ronaldo could not play before the game, who would buy tickets?

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What were Ronaldo’s words about missing the China tour?

Following the confirmation of Cristiano Ronaldo's injury, Al-Nassr issued a club statement cancelling their China visit. However, they promised supporters that they intended to reschedule the tour as soon as possible.

In addition, Cristiano Ronaldo used social media to apologise for missing the China Tour. He promised to return to the country in the future and apologised for being unable to participate.

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Part of his statement reads:

“As you know, in football some things you cannot control. I have played 22 years in football, and I am a player that doesn’t have too many injuries. So I’m really sad because Al-Nassr and myself have come to China to enjoy the tour.”

“I have been coming to China since 2003-2004, so I feel at home here – my second home. I felt that I am always special here. I feel sad. I know you are sad too, especially the people who love Cristiano, but we have to see this in a good way.”

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Published January 26th, 2024 at 10:06 IST