No int'l retirement for Cristiano Ronaldo despite WC debacle, likely to play till Euro 2024: Report
Many believed that the World Cup debacle would put an end to Ronaldo's international career. However, as per a report by Portuguese newspaper Correio da Manha, the Portuguese striker might extend his career till the Euro 2024 edition.
Surely, 2022 hasn't been kind to Cristiano Ronaldo. After a fallout with the Manchester United, he left the club with his contract still not getting over. Post his exit from the Old Trafford club, the focus shifted to the FIFA World Cup 2022 edition in Qatar. Playing his last World Cup, Ronaldo was expected to take the Portugal line-up to the final but his side bowed out with a 1-0 loss at the hands of Morocco in the quarter-finals. The veteran footballer was seen crying on the field as his World Cup dream ended in a heartbreaking manner.
Many believed that the World Cup debacle would put an end to Ronaldo's international career. However, as per a report by Portuguese newspaper Correio da Manha, the Portuguese striker might extend his career till the Euro 2024 edition. The next edition of the Euro Cup will be held in Germany and by then Ronaldo will be nearing 40. He had led his side to a remarkable Euro Cup title in 2016 and, hence, might be eager to replicate the feat once again and bow out on a high.
Talking about Ronaldo's run in the FIFA WC in Qatar, the 37-year-old didn't have a great run as he returned with only a solitary goal -- that too via a penalty kick -- in five games. Moreover, he wasn't even in the starting XI in Portugal's last two WC fixtures, i.e. in the Round of 16 clash versus Switzerland and Morocco tie in the quarters. Given how ordinary run in the FIFA WC, it is a welcome news if Ronaldo is not looking to end his international career just yet. His ardent fans would hope for him to bounce back in style in 2023 and lead Portugal to the European championship in 2024.
Meanwhile, Ronaldo's longtime rival Lionel Messi confirmed that the forthcoming World Cup final will be his last appearance in the showpiece event after starring in Argentina's 3-0 win over Croatia in the first semi-final on Wednesday (December 14).
"I feel very happy, to be able to achieve this, to finish my World Cup journey by playing my last game in a final," Messi said while talking to Argentine media outlet Diario Deportivo Ole. "It's many years for the next one and I don't think I'll be able to do it. And to finish like this, it's the best," added the Argentina captain.