EURO 2020

Ronaldo discusses future ahead of Portugal-Hungary clash

Cristiano Ronaldo discussed his future, the game at hand, the covid-19 threat and breaking records ahead of Portugal's Euro 2020 opener against Hungary in Budapest.

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Ronaldo discusses future ahead of Portugal-Hungary clash
BERNADETT SZABO REUTERS

Cristiano Ronaldo has given an interview to Portuguese news outlet SIC Notícias, where he looked ahead to Portugal's Euro 2020 Group F clash with Hungary on Tuesday, which will mark the beginning of the current champions’ campaign to retain their 2016 title. The Juventus star recognised the challenge ahead in Budapest but appeared confident that he and his team mates would overcome it.

"The team is prepared, it’s a difficult game against a team that are playing at home in front of a full stadium. But the most important thing for us is to be ourselves, stay concentrated, focused, play with a positive spirit and everything will be fine,” said the former Real Madrid striker.

Ronaldo says Portugal all-time scoring record not a priority

Cristiano also spoke of the possibility of reaching Ali Daei’s record as the national team's all-time top scorer, but insisted winning the game was his most important priority. "Records come naturally, they are not a goal,” he said. “If I score tomorrow I will be happy because it is a sign that we are closer to winning. The most important thing is to win, the records come later.

The 36-year-old forward was quizzed on Portugal’s style of play amid talk that the Seleção managed to go all the way at Euro 2016 without playing a good game. “As they say, the important thing is results and the rest is talk. What we are going to try is to reconcile the two things (winning and playing well) but if we do not, the important thing is to play and win.”

Ronaldo on covid threat: team not focused on it

Ronaldo was also asked about the threat of covid-19 after teammate João Cancelo recently tested positive for coronavirus. But the Portugal captain dismissed those concerns, insisting that it is not an issue at the front of mind among those in the squad.

“I don’t think it’s an important factor at this time. The more we focus on something, the squad will deviate more towards that. It is a pity that João tested positive,” he explained. “But we are not worried. We are not talking about covid-19. It’s an issue that everyone is tired of. The team is focused. For many, it will be their first European Championship. We all follow the protocol. We are not focused on that issue.”

Ronaldo on future

In response to questions about his future, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner said it is a subject about which he doesn’t lose sleep, adding that his focus is on national duty and the job at hand at Euro 2020.

“I've been playing at a high level for 18 years, this issue doesn't concern me,” he said. “If I were 18 or 19 years old, I think I wouldn’t be able to sleep thinking about my future. My focus is on the national team.”