So, why is he sad?
Is it because Andrés Iniesta won the UEFA Best Player in Europe Award? Perhaps, Real forced Ronaldo to play on the anniversary of his father’s death. What about the manner the club is treating Kaká? Or does it go back to money?
This article will break down the possible reasons and come to a conclusion on why Ronaldo is sad.
Please feel free to comment below with your theories on the Portuguese international's unhappiness.
Here’s a transcript of Cristiano Ronaldo’s conversation with the media where he specifically addresses this rumour:
Journalist: "Why didn't you celebrate?"
CR7: "Maybe I am a bit sad."
Journalist: "Why are you sad?"
CR7: "People know why."
Journalist: "Because of Iniesta [winning the UEFA player of the year award]?"
CR7: "No, not because of that. There are more important things. That's past. I'm OK. Anyone of the three of us [Ronaldo, Iniesta, Messi] could have won it. He deserves it."
Journalist: "Is it something to do with the club, then?"
CR7: "I'm not going to say anything else. People know why."
Journalist: "Personal or professional?"
Journalist: "Why do you say the people know? Which people?"
CR7: "People inside the club. They know. I can't say anything else."
Journalist: "Is this a passing irritation? How do you feel?"
CR7: "I don't know. We'll see."
Journalist: "Why are you [sad]?"
CR7: "I'm not saying anything else."
Aside from Cristiano Ronaldo making it clear that it was a professional, not a personal problem, there are so many flaws with this reason.
In 2005, the BBC reported:
Portugal coach Luiz Felipe Scolari has paid tribute to Cristiano Ronaldo for playing in a World Cup qualifier just a day after the death of his father.
Since the article was filed on September 8, 2005, his father passed away on September 6 or 7, 2005. On the one year anniversary of his father’s death, Ronaldo played in Portugal’s 1-1 draw against Finland.
The four-five day discrepancy disproves the theory that Ronaldo asked Real for the day off due to the seventh anniversary of his father’s death.
Jean Paul, Ronaldo's youth coordinator at Sporting Lisbon, told a heartfelt story of Ronaldo's loyalty to one of his teammates:
One day he [Ronaldo] came to me and said he needed a favour. There was another young player called Semedo, who he [Ronaldo] knew we [Sporting] couldn't keep on because there weren't enough beds at the training centre. But, he asked me to make an effort to keep him [Semedo] here. He [Ronaldo] even said he [Semedo] can sleep in my bed. We could put a sofa or mattress near my bed, so he [Semedo] can stay.
Ronaldo may have been saddened by José Mourinho's tough treatment of Kaká.
So, why did Ronaldo speak out after the Granada game? Kaká spent the entire game spectating.
Cristiano Ronaldo is the second-best footballer behind Lionel Messi and one of the most marketable athletes, yet the Portuguese superstar is the 10th highest paid footballer in the world.
La Liga football correspondent Sid Lowe explained Ronaldo's financial situation to Hawksbee and Jacobs:
This sounds to me like the frustrated call of a man, who hasn't got the contract he wants from Real Madrid.
The Beckham tax law enabled foreign executives over a certain amount of money to pay tax of 23 percent, instead of what was at the time 43 percent, but now would be closer to 52 percent. At the time, this [the law] was put in theory to bring the most talented foreign people into Spain i.e. scientists but as you can imagine, it was taken advantage by footballers. How many people qualified as foreign and earning over a half-a-million euros a year? Mostly, it was footballers.
That law has been overturned by the Spanish government but existing contracts written under that law are respected.
Cristiano Ronaldo hasn't yet been hit by this but if he wants a new contract, he will be. If he wants to continue earning €10 million after tax, rather than it costing Real Madrid €13 million, it's going to start costing Real Madrid nearly €19 million.
Of course that makes any attempts of giving him a new contract far harder.
La Liga insider Guillem Balagué told SkySports:
It has to do with their fact that Ibrahimović and Eto'o earn more than him [Ronaldo] ... There's not much to write about during the international break, it seems like a strategy to get something out of the club ... the mixzone became an improvised press conference, he normally just doesn't walk through the mixzone, but he did on this occasion ... he just chosen the perfect time in the perfect way to make public his unhappiness.
What seems to be the source of Ronaldo's unhappiness is Real Madrid's refusal to improve his contract.
The smoking gun is him venturing into the mix zone, an area he rarely ever goes into. He went there to voice an opinion, so it wasn't as if he was speaking off-the-cuff. He made it clear that he had a problem with the club.
Who planned this?
The cunning Jorge Mendes—the guy who masterminded Bébé's £7.4 million transfer to Manchester United.