Cristiano Ronaldo, Juventus Won't Play in US ICC Matches Amid Rape Investigation

Rob Blanchette@@_Rob_BFeatured ColumnistMarch 20, 2019

Juventus' Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates at the end of the Champions League round of 16, 2nd leg, soccer match between Juventus and Atletico Madrid at the Allianz stadium in Turin, Italy, Tuesday, March 12, 2019. Ronaldo scored the three goals in Juventus 3-0 win.(AP Photo/Antonio Calanni)
Antonio Calanni/Associated Press

Cristiano Ronaldo and Juventus will be kept away from the United States by organisers of next summer's International Champions Cup, according to a report from Tariq Panja of the New York Times.

The Italian champions are set to feature in the ICC but will play in the Asian edition of the competition due to Ronaldo being under investigation for rape in Las Vegas.

Panja reported the organisers do not wish to risk the Portuguese being detained if he flies into the country with his team.

Per Panja, in October, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department reopened an investigation against Ronaldo after Kathryn Mayorga said the player raped her in 2009 and paid her $375,000 to retain her silence on the matter.

Ronaldo, who left Real Madrid to move to Turin in a blockbuster deal in July, has denied the accusation, labelling it "fake news."

Juve also backed Ronaldo and commended his attitude after signing a deal to play for their club:

JuventusFC @juventusfcen

.@Cristiano Ronaldo has shown in recent months his great professionalism and dedication, which is appreciated by everyone at Juventus. 1/1

JuventusFC @juventusfcen

The events allegedly dating back to almost 10 years ago do not change this opinion, which is shared by anyone who has come into contact with this great champion. 2/2

The Italians are reportedly set to be joined by Ronaldo's former team Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur in the Asian leg of the ICC.

Ronaldo was a United player when the alleged rape occurred on June 19, 2009. The forward moved to Real Madrid during that summer.