Ronaldo ‘to exit Real Madrid’ over tax woes

ON THE WAY:  Cristiano Ronaldo. (Matthias Hangst, Getty Images)
ON THE WAY: Cristiano Ronaldo. (Matthias Hangst, Getty Images)

Johannesburg - Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo wants to leave the club and Spain after being accused of committing tax fraud in that country, a report in Portuguese sports daily A Bola said on Friday.

The newspaper said its story was based on a reliable source and that the 32-year-old four-time world player of the year had already made up his mind to ask the club for a transfer.

Acted legally

It said that Ronaldo was “deeply disenchanted” with the allegations against him.

Record, another sports daily, carried a similar story.

Ronaldo’s agents could not immediately be reached for comment.

Spanish prosecutors have filed a lawsuit against the player accusing him of defrauding tax authorities of 14.7 million (R211 million) by hiding his image rights income between 2011 and 2014.

Ronaldo has denied any wrongdoing.

Real Madrid said on Thursday they were confident the Portuguese forward had acted legally.

Top scorer

The Sun reported on Saturday that Ronaldo’s heart is already at Manchester United, says former Real Madrid president Ramon Calderon.

Ronaldo led Real Madrid to their 12th European Cup earlier this month after scoring two goals in a 4-1 victory over Juventus in the Champions League final, becoming the tournament’s top scorer.

Ronaldo, Portugal’s all-time leading scorer, is the latest in a long line of soccer players in Spain – among them Barcelona’s Lionel Messi and Neymar – to be caught up in cases over tax or transfers.

Ronaldo has completed eight seasons at Real Madrid since joining them from Manchester United in 2009 for a then world record fee of just more than 96 million.

Win tournament

During that time, they won the Champions League three times and La Liga twice. In November, he agreed to extend his contract until 2021.

He is currently at the Confederations Cup in Russia with the Portuguese national team where his team-mate Andre Silva said that Ronaldo was motivated for the tournament.

“All I can say is that he is motivated, focused on the national team and encouraging us to win the tournament,” he told a news conference in Kazan, where Portugal face Mexico on Sunday. Reuters

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