Cristiano Ronaldo left Juventus for Manchester United on deadline day and has since been criticised by former team-mates Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci
Juventus chairman Andrea Agnelli is the latest person to make a remark about Cristiano Ronaldo’s transfer to Manchester United, insisting he’s not as big as the club.
As quoted by Calciomercato, Agnelli told reporters on Friday: “It was an honour and a pleasure to have him.
“We can only applaud him for what he did on the field and thank him for how much he made us rejoice. The one sin is to have had him with a year and a half of an empty stadium.
“Alvaro Morata is right, though, it is the Juventus shirt that requires responsibility. Juventus is bigger than everyone, than anyone who has participated. Juventus comes before anyone.”
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Ronaldo has come under fire from various individuals at Juventus in recent weeks, including former team-mates Giorgio Chiellini and Leonardo Bonucci.
Chiellini said: “I had already figured out he could leave this summer, because we reached a stage of the working relationship where Cristiano needed new motivation and a team that would play for him.
“When he finds a team like that, he can always be decisive, as he was at Juve too.
“Juventus are beginning a process of renewal and trying to bring the average age down, so clearly he would’ve been an added bonus if he’d stayed, but it’s fair he wanted a team more focused on the present than the future.
“Ronaldo left on August 28 and it certainly would’ve been better if he had gone earlier so we could prepare. Unfortunately, we paid a price for that.
“It does create a shock to the system and we lost points in the opening games because of that. If he’d left on August 1, then we would’ve had time to reorganise and be ready for the start of the season.”
Bonucci, meanwhile, said: “Ronaldo made a choice that we respected. “Last year the team played for him, now the group must rediscover that Juve spirit that was there before his arrival.
“Cristiano’s presence had a big influence on us. Just training with him gave us something extra but subconsciously players started to think his presence alone was enough to win games.
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“We began to fall a little short in our daily work, the humility, the sacrifice, the desire to be there for your team-mate day after day. Over the last few years, I think you could see that.”
Ronaldo has since hit back at the comments, telling reporters: “To be honest, I’m 36. I win everything, so am I going to be worried about the people who say bad things about me?
“I sleep good at night. I go to my bed with my conscience very good. Keep going with that because I will still close mouths and win things.”