Manchester United captain and Portugal international Bruno Fernandes has denied claims that he gave Cristiano Ronaldo the cold shoulder in a video that went viral earlier this week.
In recent video footage released by the Portuguese FA, it seemed the midfielder acted coldly towards Ronaldo in their first meeting after the star’s explosive interview on Talk TV in which he criticised the club and his team manager.
However, Fernandes has come out to deter any claims of disharmony between the two, emphasising that he and Ronaldo were sharing a joke in the clip.
Speaking to Sky Sports following Portugal’s 4-0 win over Nigeria, the Portugal man said:
“I have no problem with anyone.
“I do my job, and as a manager once said to me, everything that you can control is yourself. I think everyone thinks the same way. You have to control yourself, give your best, and that’s it.”
Asked if he gave Ronaldo the cold shoulder, Fernandes replied: “Why do you say that?
“They put the sound [on] after. Did you hear it with the sound? You have to.
“In Portugal, we have a problem: I was watching one of the channels that was talking about that, ‘was cold, was bad’, for 45 minutes.
“All of a sudden, they go on a break, the national team sends it with sound.
“The sound says that he is joking with me, and so they come back and say there was a joke, and they cut there. They said, ‘if you want to see again, just go back, but if they go back, they will see there’s a problem. But if they are really true and explain what was in that video, people will know, but now people don’t know.”
The interview by Ronaldo has led to huge backlash and criticism from fans and pundits, and United are reportedly looking into ways to terminate the 37-year-old’s contract.
But Fernandes has stated that he is not concerned about the matter.
“This is the national team; Manchester United will be my focus after the World Cup,” he said.
“I didn’t read the interview, so I’m okay with that.
“Now it’s the national team. It’s Portugal. The coach made a point that it’s us. He’s made that point since I came to the national team in 2017, and that is still clear that in his mind, the main thing here is the national team and us.
“We have to be focused on the World Cup because a World Cup doesn’t come every time. You don’t have a chance to play a World Cup many times.
“Cristiano will play in his fifth World Cup, so everyone is ready for that, and everyone wants to give their best for the team.”
Portugal start their World Cup 2022 campaign on Thursday, November 24, when they face Ghana.