In recent weeks Cristiano Ronaldo has not played enough for Manchester United and is at risk of losing match sharpness according to Portugal coach Fernando Santos. At the close of the summer transfer window, Ronaldo returned to his boyhood football club, 12 years after leaving the club in 2009.
During September, he played 90 minutes in three Premier League games in a row. He also began and played 90 minutes in the Champions League against Villarreal at the end of last month.
As a result of being shockingly left on the bench and only appearing as a substitute against Everton in his club’s most recent game earlier this month, Santos has claimed that he has lacked meaningful intensity this month. This could impair his level of performance.
However, as a result, ahead of a World Cup qualifier against Luxembourg, Portugal coach Fernando Santos wanted Ronaldo to play in Saturday night’s friendly against Qatar. “[Ronaldo] will go to the [Qatar] game because he needs playing time. It’s important to him at this stage,” Santos is quoted as saying by the Daily Mail.
“The last full game he played was in the Champions League,” the coach added, referring to the Villarreal game on 29 September, which was still less than two weeks ago. If he only plays against Luxembourg, he will have practically 15 days without playing with intensity.
“At this point, I will say that there are strong possibilities of Ronaldo going to the game against Qatar, either starting or coming on later during the second half, so that the competitive rhythms are at their maximum against Luxembourg.”
As a result, Ronaldo made his impression in a friendly match against Qatar scoring a goal in the 37th minute. Portugal dominated the match with three goals leaving World Cup host Qatar with no goals. The match ended on a 3-0 match score with Silva hitting the net in the last 90th minute.