The Portuguese football icon made the gesture during Manchester United’s Champions League defeat to Atletico Madrid
© Twitter @BT Sport
Cameras caught Manchester United legend Cristiano Ronaldo suggesting that the referee needed glasses during Manchester United’s Champions League defeat to Atletico Madrid on Tuesday.
Crashing out on the continent once more to Spanish foes, who have topped them in the last six seasons either in the UCL or the Europa League, the Red Devils were nullified at Old Trafford where La Liga holders Atletico won 1-0 thanks to a Renan Lodi effort that sealed a 2-1 aggregate win.
Just like his generational rival Lionel Messi, whose Paris Saint-Germain side were eliminated by Atleti’s cross-city rivals Real Madrid last week, Cristiano Ronaldo will not lift club football’s most valuable trophy this term with his frustration at such a prospect evident when Brazil international Lodi opened the scoring.
As shown in footage widely-shared online, Ronaldo was irate after the goal and gestured towards referee Slavko Vincic that he needed glasses while also mouthing something and punching the air in frustration before United kicked off to resume play.
Ronaldo and other teammates felt there was a foul on Anthony Elanga before the build-up when United’s defense were caught off guard and Antoine Griezmann found an unmarked Lodi at the back post with an inch-perfect cross. But even after a VAR review, however, the goal on the stroke of half time stood and the Spaniards went down the tunnel on top.
Furthermore, 37-year-old veteran Ronaldo was also criticized on social media for hounding the referee while Atleti broke and not pressing as the Rojiblancos thundered down the pitch on the way to putting one past goalkeeper David De Gea.
With Atleti arguably the worst side in football to concede an early goal to, their manager Diego Simeone predictably positioned his men to shut up shop and hold on to the lead which they did with relative ease while Ronaldo at one point also painfully bashed his teeth into the back of captain Harry Maguire’s head.
At full time, Simeone was pelted with drinks, food and other missiles by furious United fans who have seen their charges win just two knockout ties in the Champions League (against Olympiakos in 2014 and PSG in 2019) since reaching the final in 2011 where they were beaten by Lionel Messi’s FC Barcelona in Rome.
United fans threw their drinks at Simeone 😳(via @CBSSportsGolazo)pic.twitter.com/JEoYFcfvol
— B/R Football (@brfootball) March 15, 2022
Ronaldo has not sealed the iconic big-eared crown since leaving Real Madrid in 2018 either, and will now undoubtedly finish the first season of his second chapter at United trophyless for the first time in 12 years.
For the first time in 12 years, Cristiano Ronaldo will finish the season without a club trophy. 😳 pic.twitter.com/1Xi3xCe4T6
— CBS Sports Golazo ⚽️ (@CBSSportsGolazo) March 15, 2022
Post-match, Ronaldo’s interim coach Ralf Rangnick supported the five-time Ballon d’Or winner by remarking that there were “some curious refereeing decisions”.
“I wouldn’t necessarily say decisive – maybe the one they scored. I believe it was a foul on Anthony Elanga, the referee and linesman didn’t see it that way,” the German added.
“He [Vincic] made it pretty easy for Atletico to do their time-wasting antics and it didn’t make it any easier for us,” Rangnick claimed.
“In the second half, I don’t know if the game was played for more than two minutes without being interrupted with someone lying on the floor.
“Four additional minutes was just a joke,” Rangnick also said, while refusing to accept that United had yet again failed to turn up on a big European night.
“We didn’t score, that’s true,” Rangnick accepted. “We played a good first half, all those things that we planned to do in the first half the team did. The only thing we didn’t achieve is to convert that energetic performance into the first goal, and against a team like Atletico it’s highly important you score the first goal.