Cristiano Ronaldo hurled his shirt to the ground in a “clumsy” and “rude” gesture of generosity to a ball boy on Sunday, with the striker said to have rowed with teammates and later “punched walls” despite Juventus beating Genoa.
The talismanic forward found himself at the center of controversy after the 3-1 win in the Serie A clash, when the five-time Ballon d’Or winner left the pitch in frustration, having apparently been upset over his lack of goals.
The 36-year-old took off his number 7 shirt before throwing it to the grass, where it was picked up by a ball boy who grabbed the precious piece of football treasure.
Ronaldo’s actions triggered angry reactions on social media, with fans accusing the Juventus superstar of unsportsmanlike behavior.
A Video by the most reliable Juventus reporter @romeoagresti in which you can clearly see Ronaldo looking at the ball boy at the side and throwing him his shirt.
Some ungrateful Juventus fans attacked Cristiano for this without knowing the story.pic.twitter.com/hi3o5TZXFN
— The CR7 Timeline. (@TimelineCR7) April 11, 2021
Media: Ronaldo shows disrespect towards the Club by throwing the jersey away after full time because he did not score.
Truth: A ball boy asked Ronaldo for his jersey so he took it off and tossed it towards him.
It’s simple. Blowing things out of proportion does not get clout. pic.twitter.com/MpP94ndKQy
— Sameep (@samtweet07) April 12, 2021
Last month, the forward also faced criticism for an on-field meltdown when he threw his captain’s armband aside after his goal was bizarrely disallowed in a 2022 World Cup qualifying match against Serbia.
Ronaldo’s jersey-throwing actions were later explained by Juventus reporter Romeo Agresti, who claimed he deliberately gave up his shirt at the request of a ball boy.
Gazzetta said that Ronaldo had acted in a “somewhat rude and clumsy” way at the end of a match in which he accused Federico Chiesa and Giorgio Chiellini of passing poorly and was said to have vented his anger at goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny for throwing the ball out of play because an opposition player appeared to be injured.
Are they really excusing Ronaldo for throwing the shirt?
Saying it was for the ball boy? What a ridiculous club Juventus are.#Ronaldo
— Jonny🖤💙 (@JonnyIMFC) April 11, 2021
Regardless of Ronaldo throwing the jersey in frustration or towards a ball boy…
If this was any other player from the squad, many of you would have crucified the player. “Publicly execute him” “Sell the idiot” blah blah…
— Kamran Khan (@KammyJuventino) April 11, 2021
“There are ten of them – we have to attack,” the Portugal captain is said to have told Szczesny, before later reportedly punching the walls in the team locker room.
Juventus are a chasmic 12 points behind leaders Inter Milan with eight matches of the Italian top-flight season remaining.
“I don’t think he will be fined,” manager Andrea Pirlo later told reporters. “It can happen that players might have moments of nervousness.
“He was angry because he didn’t manage to score. It’s normal that someone like him always wants to improve.”
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