DAILY MAIL 🔵 Rio Ferdinand is mocked for ’embarrassing’ Cristiano Ronaldo take – Shango Media
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DAILY MAIL 🔵 Rio Ferdinand is mocked for ’embarrassing’ Cristiano Ronaldo take

  • Rio Ferdinand claimed Portugal would not reach Euro 2024 without Ronaldo 
  • Fans have now responded after the side qualified with a 100 per cent record   
  • Click here to follow Mail Sport’s Euro 2024 WhatsApp Channel for all the latest breaking news and updates from Germany

Fans have responded to Rio Ferdinand’s claim that Portugal would not have qualified for Euro 2024 without Cristiano Ronaldo and labelled it as ’embarrassing’. 

The former Manchester United defender insisted that, without the goals from his old Red Devils team-mate, Roberto Martinez’s side would have missed out on the tournament. 

Ronaldo – who many argued was detrimental to Portugal’s side at the 2022 World Cup – scored 10 goals across their 10 qualification matches for this summer’s Euros.

With all this in mind, TNT Sports pundits Ferdinand, Joe Cole and Ally McCoist were asked whether Portugal were a better side without the five-time Ballon d’Or winner.  

In response, Ferdinand said: ‘You know in qualifiers he got 10 goals in 10 games. If you looked at that World Cup in isolation, I might side with you. But when you look at the [Euros] qualification process, without him they don’t qualify. So I have to disagree.’

Cristiano Ronaldo (pictured) is set to play in his sixth European Championship this summer

Rio Ferdinand insisted that Portugal would not have reached the competition without Ronaldo

However, fans were quick to point out that Martinez’s side picked up the maximum possible points and conceded just two goals – suggesting Ronaldo was not the catalyst for their qualification. 

‘He’s such a clown… this was their group,’ one fan wrote on X, with a picture of Portugal’s qualification group accompanying the post. 

Martinez’s side had Slovakia, Luxembourg, Iceland, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Liechenstien in their group, which proved no issue as they qualified with a 100 per cent record. 

From their 10 matches, they scored a staggering 36 goals and conceded just two against their opponents. 

Another user, similarly posting the qualification group in their message, wrote about Ferdinand: ‘This guy is so embarrassing’. 

‘Remove his goals from those games: Portugal win the group by 4 points and end on +24 goal difference,’ one fan said on social media. 

‘Portugal has one of the strongest squad in the world and in their generation and they will struggle to qualify from this group without a 40yr old playing in the Middle East,come on Rio!,’ another said. 

‘They scored 36 goals while conceding 2…. Stop’, one fan wrote with a trio of ‘laughing emojis’ accompanying his post. 

In recent days, some have questioned whether Ronaldo should be included in Portugal’s opening group games in Germany this summer – with Arsenal legend Paul Merson stating that he would bench the five-time Champions League winner for the group stages.

But it appears Martinez is keen to use the forward as much as possible, with the ex-Everton manager stating that he intends to give Ronaldo and his team-mate Pepe, 41, a run out when take on Ireland in their final warm-up match on Tuesday.

Fans were quick to offer their rebuttal towards Ferdinand's claim about his former team-mate

Portugal coach Roberto Martinez revealed Ronaldo will play in their final Euro warm-up game

‘Tomorrow we have Rúben [Dias], Pepe and Cristiano. It’s a perfect game to give minutes to the starters, but they will have minutes,’ the Portugal boss said during a press conference on Monday.

Ronaldo has also been in fine form for his club side this season, scoring 44 goals in 45 appearances in all competitions for Al-Nassr and Martinez emphasised his experience and leadership qualities are integral to this team.

‘It is important for us to attack and defend with eleven. Cristiano has brutal experience. There is no other with this experience. He is a player who knows very well how to use space in the area and is a special finisher, a special player.

‘Cristiano’s focus, reaction to loss and defensive positions were perfect during the games we played, the last eleven games. So for me, there are no doubts, there are no worries.’

Rio FerdinandCristiano Ronaldo

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