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July 10, 2024

Was Cristiano Ronaldo let down by Roberto Martinez at EURO 2024?

Cristiano Ronaldo and Roberto Martinez at the EURO 2024

Following a somewhat disappointing campaign at the EURO 2024, it's important to understand what went wrong in Portugal's journey at the tournament. Was Ronaldo out of form? Or did Roberto Martinez play with the wrong tactics for Ronaldo to showcase his talents?

Cristiano Ronaldo is the greatest and most prolific goal scorer in the history of the European Championships. Along with holding the record for the most goals in the competition's history with 14, the Portuguese forward also holds the record for the most goals in the EUROs and qualifying matches combined with 55. Ronaldo's nearest competitors to these records are Michel Platini - who retired in 1988, with nine goals, and Harry Kane with 7 goals. In short, there is Cristiano Ronaldo and then there is rest.

Cristiano Ronaldo - Will he continue playing for Portugal after EURO 2024:

CR7 departs Germany without scoring

With such daylight between Ronaldo and any other footballer when scoring in international European football, it is strange to see that the latest EUROs outrights betting for the Golden Boot does not feature the 39-year-old.

Instead, if you were to bet on EURO 2024 Golden Boot favourites, you would see Cody Gakpo at 7/5 and Harry Kane at 5/1.

The harsh reality is that Ronaldo won’t win consecutive Golden Boot awards at the EUROs as he leaves Germany not having found the back of the net once after Portugal were knocked out in the quarter-final against France.

How did it go this wrong? The short answer might be Portuguese manager Roberto Martinez.

Martinez and a missed opportunity to help Ronaldo fire

Laying the blame at Martinez's door might seem an unjust thing to do as the Spaniard played Ronaldo in every minute of every fixture at EURO 2024. However, was that the best way to utilise a 39-year-old Ronaldo, and might the attacker have benefited from rather being used as an impact sub off the bench?

Indeed, CR7's dynamic movement, ability to outjump in the air, and a sixth sense for where the ball might drop in the box would have presented a near-on-impossible task for tiring defenders.

You imagine that had Martinez decided to do so and sent Ronaldo on for the last 30 minutes of every game, it's likely a sense of panic would have developed in the defensive ranks of the opposition, akin to a flock of weary sheep seeing a wolf enter their pasture.

Away from Ronaldo's unmatched on-field attributes, you also can't underestimate the psychological impact that the sight of the Portuguese superstar coming off the bench would have had on his own teammates.

It's likely that CR7's introduction would have lifted his countrymen and the crowd with the game finally balanced.

While you can only surmise, it's also easy to imagine a scenario where Portugal benefited from newfound momentum at a crucial stage as the most gifted marksmen in European football history took charge of leading the line.

Essentially, the outcome for Ronaldo and his nation at EURO 2024 might have been markedly different had Martinez had a difficult conversation with Portugal's all-time leading goalscorer.

Yes, Ronaldo might have at first been averse to starting the game on the bench but that's the difference between good managers and great ones. Martinez should have clearly outlined Ronaldo's new role and helped the forward buy into what he was being asked to do.

It would have soon become evident that Ronaldo's contribution was as important from the bench with the player handed the power to change games late on. This is where Ronaldo thrives; with the spotlight on him and needing to deliver.

Cristiano Ronaldo apologises to fans at the EURO 2024

A tale of what could have been

Martinez ultimately failed to find the stage for Ronaldo to perform on and instead used him inadequately. It cost Ronaldo the chance to add to his significant goal tally and Portugal the opportunity to win the EUROs with their most talented side since 2004.

Cristiano Ronaldo misses penalty-kick at the EURO 2024

Cristiano Ronaldo next game for Al Nassr is on July 19, against Maritimo for the pre-season campaign. You can watch Maritimo vs Al Nassr, Argentina vs Canada, Spain vs France, Netherlands vs England, Manchester City vs Celtic and Hearts vs Tottenham, all matches provided from our football streaming game pages.

Al Nassr next game:
Maritimo vs Al Nassr
kick-off time (19-07-2024):

Beijing (China) | UTC/GMT+8: 01:00
India (New Delhi) |
UTC/GMT+5.30: 22:30
Saudi Arabia
(Riyadh) | UTC/GMT+3: 20:00
(Madrid) | UTC/GMT+2: 19:00
Portugal and England (Lisbon/London) | UTC/GMT+1: 18:00
Rio de Janeiro (Brazil) | UTC/GMT-3: 14:00
New York (United States) | UTC/GMT-3: 14:00
Los Angeles (United States) | UTC/GMT-6: 11:00

Sources: / /

Cristiano Ronaldo reacts in fury for Portugal at the EURO 2024




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