Soccer

Cristiano Ronaldo speaks at Juventus press conference ahead of Manchester United clash

Cristiano Ronaldo returned to Manchester United this week as Jose Mourinho’s side play Juventus in the Champions League group stages on Tuesday night.

Ronaldo, who spent six years at United between 2003 and 2009 before moving to Real Madrid, arrived in England having been accused of rape by Kathryn Mayorga, a 34-year-old American woman.

Police in Las Vegas have reopened their investigation into the alleged assault from 2009. Ronaldo has denied the allegations, insisting his ‘conscience is clear’.

Ronaldo was asked about Mayorga by a member of the media to which he responded:

“I’m happy man. We did the statement two weeks ago. Of course, I’m not going to lie on this situation. My lawyers are confident and of course I am too. The most important thing is that I enjoy football and enjoy life. I have people who take care of my life. The truth always comes in the first position.”

It was the last question received by Ronaldo with Juventus’ press officer thanking him for his time immediately afterwards.

Prior to that, Ronaldo had also been asked whether he was a role model to which Ronaldo replied in a similar vein:

“I know I am an example, 100%, in the pitch and outside the pitch. I always smile. I’m blessed. I play at a fantastic club, I have a fantastic family, I’m healthy. I have everything. The rest does not affect on me.”

The five-time Ballon d’Or winner spoke fondly of Sir Alex Ferguson on his return to the city he left in 2009 to sign for Real Madrid. Ronaldo has only revisited his old home once since then, in 2013, when he downed his former side in the last-16 of the Champions League.

The 33-year-old was in danger of missing the tie against Manchester United after receiving a red card in the 29th minute of Juventus’ 2-0 victory over Valencia last month but his automatic one-match ban was not extended by Uefa.

And now the £99 million striker has unsurprisingly had little doubts that he would leave Manchester as a winner once again in a foreign strip, despite the stern test offered by his former side come Tuesday.

“They are a good team, they play at home. We have our weapons. We are Juve. I think we have a chance. I think if we play the way the coach wants we have a chance to win the game. We have to respect Manchester United.”

Read the full live updates from Ronaldo’s press conference below. 

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