CRISTIANO RONALDO posted an emotional statement after his “biggest and most ambitious dream” of winning a World Cup ended.
The 37-year-old could not inspire Portugal to quarter-final victory off the bench against Morocco.
And he wrote on Instagram this afternoon: “Winning a World Cup for Portugal was the biggest and most ambitious dream of my career.
“Fortunately, I won many titles of international dimension, including for Portugal, but putting the name of our country on the highest level in the world was my biggest dream.
“I fought for it. I fought hard for this dream. In the 5 presences that I scored in World Cups over 16 years, always alongside great players and supported by millions of Portuguese people, I gave my all.
“I left everything on the field. I never turned my face to the fight and I never gave up on that dream.
“Unfortunately, yesterday the dream ended. It is not worth reacting to heat.”
After starting the first three games of the tournament, Ronaldo was benched for the last-16 win over Switzerland and the quarter-final defeat to Morocco.
He was dropped after reacting angrily to being substituted in the 2-1 group stage loss to South Korea.
But Ronaldo continued: “I just want everyone to know that much has been said, much has been written, much has been speculated, but my dedication to Portugal has not changed for an instant.
“I was always one more person fighting for everyone’s goal and I would never turn my back on my teammates and my country.
“For now, there’s not much more to say. Thank you, Portugal. Thank you, Qatar. The dream was beautiful while it lasted… Now, it’s time to be a good advisor and allow each one to draw their own conclusions.”
Ronaldo is one of 10 Portugal stars not returning to the country’s capital following yesterday’s defeat.
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