Cristiano Ronaldo says Manchester United “didn’t believe” he missed their pre-season tour due to the health of his partner and their daughter.
In the latest clip to be released from his interview with Piers Morgan, Ronaldo dropped another bombshell, claiming United were sceptical over his excuse for not joining his teammates in Australia.
Ronaldo says he would “never” put football ahead of his family and decided to stay and support Georgina Rodrigues and their newborn, Bella Esmeralda, who were in hospital for a week.
He told Morgan: “I spoke with the director and the president of Manchester United and they kind of didn’t believe that something was going wrong, which make me feel bad.”
Asked to clarify what he said, Ronaldo moved his head from side to side and said: “They believe but in the same way. I am never ever going to change the health of my family for football. Never. Now or 10 years behind or forward, and it is something that really hurt me because they doubt my words.
“That I struggle, especially Bella and Geo who had one week in hospital because of a big problem and I didn’t go to the pre-season tour because of that.
“I think it was not fair to leave my family for the pre-season. This is why I didn’t go.”
Ronaldo has joined up with the Portugal squad for the World Cup and insisted his “absolute focus” is on the national team despite everyone else’s being on his astonishing put-downs of United and Erik ten Hag.
A day after an initial clip of the interview was released, in which the Manchester United forward accused his club of “betraying” him and trying to force him out, Ronaldo wrote on Twitter: “Total and absolute focus on the work of the National Team.
“A united group, towards a single objective: to fulfil the dream of all Portuguese people!”
Morgan has confirmed that there are more bombshells to come from the interview, which will air in full on Wednesday, including some choice words about former teammate Gary Neville.