Portugal head coach Fernando Santos has said that in spite of throwing the captain’s armband on the pitch during a 2-2 draw with Serbia in World Cup 2022 qualifying, Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo will remain captain of the national team.
Ronaldo hit the ball towards goal in the 93rd minute but Serbian defender Stefan Mitrovic bobbled the ball away.
The referees decided there was no goal scored as the ball had not crossed the line in that episode. Without waiting for the final whistle, Ronaldo left the field and threw his captain’s armband on the pitch on emotion.
“He will keep [the captain’s armband]. If Cristiano, who is at least an example to the whole nation, had insulted the coach, his colleagues, or the Portuguese Football Federation, then we would have thought. None of that happened.”
“What happened was a moment of great disappointment. It could have happened to me too. It is the disappointment of a man who always wants to win, who gives his all for the national team,” Santos said to Record.
“It happened to him, but it could have happened to anybody else. No one is saying he behaved well in that episode, but to wonder if he will remain captain…? Cristiano didn’t throw his national team jersey on the ground. He simply expressed his emotions [after the cancelled goal].”
“Cristiano was the first to admit that he shouldn’t have thrown the captain’s armband. He will definitely remain captain.”
Portugal will play Luxembourg in the 2022 World Cup qualifiers tomorrow, March 30.