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Cristiano Ronaldo hit with new injury scare, could the US benefit?

Jun 4, 2014, 10:50 AM EDT

Portugal Israel WCup Soccer AP

Cristiano Ronaldo’s battle against injury has become more serious than first thought.

The Portuguese captain is currently training on his own and is now suffering from tendinitis in his left leg to go along with the thigh injury he also suffered following the UEFA Champions League final at the end of the domestic campaign in Spain.

Ronaldo is wounded and is in a race against time to be fit for Portugal’s World Cup opener against Germany on June 16.  That means against the USA in the second group game on June 22, he could potentially not be 100 percent fit or not fit enough to play at all.

The reigning FIFA world player of the year was hampered by leg injuries late in the season and played through the pain to help Real Madrid win the UCL. However that could come at a huge price as one of the top talents on show in Brazil will be battling against persistent issues after a grueling season.

MORE: Messi ranked soccer’s MVP, twice as valuable as Ronaldo

At the moment Portugal are in the United States preparing for the World Cup, it plays Mexico on Friday and Ireland next week in friendlies before flying down to Brazil. If Ronaldo fails to play in either of those warm up games, huge questions will remain over his fitness. When you look around the Portuguese squad, Ronaldo is the main man and if you stop him, you will thwart Portugal’s offense.

However these lingering injuries are good news for the U.S. as they will hope the 28-year-old has an off-day and these problems impact his play in their Group G encounter in Manaus.

The severity of his tendinitis and other muscle injuries is yet to be fully discovered but his former Manchester United teammate and current Portuguese national team winger Nani isn’t too worried about Ronaldo’s fitness.

“I don’t believe the situation with Ronaldo is worrying,” Nani said. “He’s going well, and he is relaxed about it. Things are going the right way. We hope that Cristiano is in good enough shape to play and to help the team.”

While Portugal holds its breath and hopes Ronaldo is fit and raring to go from June 16 onwards, fans of the U.S. national team are hoping for the complete opposite.

  1. lunasceiling - Jun 4, 2014 at 10:57 AM

    I hope Ronaldo is fit by the time the tournament starts, despite any advantage lost for the US. As much as I want our team to somehow make it out of the group, the World Cup is a showcase for the best, and there are already too many great players out.

    • mikeevergreen - Jun 4, 2014 at 3:20 PM

      Don’t worry, he will be. Portugal are nothing without him, so he will play even if dead.

  2. christophershearin - Jun 4, 2014 at 11:09 AM

    would love to see a couple of hard fouls on Ronaldo, make him think twice each time he touches the ball

    • lyleoross - Jun 4, 2014 at 11:59 AM

      I’m gonna disagree. The notion of setting out to hurt anyone seems weak. I also doubt that this would impact Ronaldo in any real sense. Remember, he does play Champions football. I suspect a hard foul on him would make him roll around on the ground while moaning, all the while laughing his backside off while the referee handed out the red.

      • christophershearin - Jun 4, 2014 at 12:49 PM

        i never said anything about trying to injure him, that is bush league garbage. I said foul him hard a few times. Any athlete playing through an injury is going to be slightly tentative, putting a hard foul on him will be cause for concern in his mind, and will possibly cause him to go less than full speed at times.

        We all know Ronaldo is known for flopping over like he was murdered at a soft beeze, give him a reason to flop around, and he will think twice.

      • lyleoross - Jun 4, 2014 at 2:47 PM

        Still gonna disagree, no one gets to the level that Ronaldo is at by not being able to take a hit. I understand that he flops around when he thinks it’s to his advantage. Take a look at NBA video and look at how much flopping they do. Just because a player takes flops doesn’t mean they are weak, it simply means they are playing the referee. Doesn’t make it right, or good for the sport, but it also doesn’t mean the player can’t take a hit.

        Along those lines, deliberately fouling a player hard is the definition of a red card. Setting it as a strategy is still, as you said, bush league.

  3. jdfsquared - Jun 4, 2014 at 12:25 PM

    Don’t wanna see him hurt, but as a US fan I can’t help but see this as good news. In the end, I’m only worried about our team, no one else.

    I bet Fabian Johnson is salivating over this.

  4. ws0001 - Jun 4, 2014 at 12:52 PM

    Did Dr. Gregg Popovich diagnose him? It makes far more sense for Portugal to let him have a lax camp before the World Cup than to let little things linger and risk it.

  5. mikeevergreen - Jun 4, 2014 at 3:21 PM

    I find it repulsive that Portugal has to tout up an injury so as to make sure their opposition aren’t going to take them seriously. Losy tactic.

    • mikeevergreen - Jun 4, 2014 at 3:22 PM

      Lousy tactic.

  6. martysbetter - Jun 4, 2014 at 7:32 PM

    Its sort of laughable to suggest Portugal are a one man team when they field the likes of Nani, João Moutinho, Pepe, Fábio Coentrão, William Carvalho etc etc..

    This is a squad chock full of players who feature for some of the best teams in the world, even without CR7 defeating Portugal will be no easy task.

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