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    Saturday, July 6, 2024

    Ronaldo Comforts Disheartened Pepe as Portugal Exit Euro 2024

    Cristiano Ronaldo consoled a dejected Pepe as Portugal's experienced players suffered a disappointing elimination from the Euro 2024 tournament.

    During the recent European Championship, Cristiano Ronaldo was seen consoling a distraught teammate following their unfortunate elimination from the tournament. This emotional moment raised questions about whether this could be the final major international competition for some of the players involved.

    Pepe, a seasoned defender who continues to excel for his nation at the remarkable age of 41, displayed visible distress as he sought solace in Ronaldo’s embrace for approximately 15 seconds following Portugal’s unfortunate defeat against France in a penalty shootout during the quarterfinal match held in Hamburg on Friday.

    Two esteemed Portuguese individuals, with a combined age of 80 years, presented a remarkable spectacle.

    “”The sport of soccer can be quite challenging and unforgiving,” Pepe stated.

    Ronaldo displayed emotional distress during the Euro 2024 match, shedding tears after a crucial penalty save during extra time in the last-16 encounter against Slovenia, which occurred just four days prior. Similarly, he exhibited profound sadness at the 2022 World Cup following Portugal’s defeat to Morocco in the quarterfinal stage.

    It is possible that he had exhausted his emotional reserves, as he merely gazed skyward, conveying a sense of disappointment and regret.

    Ronaldo will be 41 years old when the next major tournament, the 2026 World Cup, hosted by the United States, Canada, and Mexico, takes place.

    Would it be possible for him to remain until that time?

    The individual in question retains the position of captain for his nation, having achieved a remarkable feat by accumulating 130 international goals and making 212 international appearances, both of which stand as records in the men’s category.

    He continues to actively participate in and complete full matches for his nation. The sole instance where he did not finish a match during the Euro 2024 tournament occurred during the group stage against Georgia. At that time, he was substituted in the 66th minute, as Portugal had already secured their advancement. Notably, he played the entire 120 minutes against both Slovenia and France.

    He continues to garner the admiration and deference of his colleagues and coach, Roberto Martinez.

     

    Despite his current club’s location in Saudi Arabia, which is outside of the global football spotlight, Cristiano Ronaldo has now gone eight consecutive games without scoring a goal in major tournaments. This includes all five of Portugal’s matches at Euro 2024 and its final three matches at the World Cup in Qatar.

    The player was severely restricted by the French center backs William Saliba and Dayot Upamecano, with the player’s only clear opportunity occurring during extra time when he managed to evade his marker but was unable to direct a shot on target from a cross from the right.


    Ronaldo’s penalty conversion during the shootout, unfortunately, proved insufficient in securing victory. Subsequently, he assumed the role of consoler for Pepe.

    “I won’t say it publicly,” Pepe told TV station Canal 11, when asked what Ronaldo said to him. “But we feel it a lot. Contrary to what many people think, we feel it a lot.

    “We feel the frustration of not winning a game, of being eliminated in such a big competition as the European Championship, knowing that we had a lot of quality to go through. That’s the pain we feel.”

    Portugal coach Roberto Martinez echoed those thoughts, saying “the tears are tears of frustration.”

    “When you play against better opposition, there are no tears but this is hard to accept,” he said.

    Martinez added that Ronaldo had yet to make a call about his international future, saying things were “too raw” and that Portugal was “suffering a defeat as a team — there are no individual decisions at this point.”

    Pepe was slightly more open, even if he still left things unclear about his future.

    “I will have the opportunity to speak in the future,” he said. “I don’t want to speak about it (now) because tomorrow people might be speaking about my future instead of talking about this process.”

    Renowned footballer Cristiano Ronaldo concluded his European Championship career with an impressive record of 14 goals. This remarkable achievement surpasses that of his closest competitor, Michel Platini, who notably scored all of his goals during the Euro 1984 tournament, including two exceptional hat tricks.

    Ronaldo holds the unique distinction of being the only player to participate in six editions of the European Championship. Prior to the recent tournament in Germany, he had consistently demonstrated his goal-scoring prowess in each edition.

    Regrettably, the Euro 2024 tournament proved to be a challenging endeavor for Ronaldo, marking the end of his remarkable European Championship journey.

     

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