CRISTIANO RONALDO has ramped up the pressure on Florentino Perez as the Real Madrid president presides over a crisis at the Bernabeu.
Ronaldo departed Real in the summer after helping to spearhead their third-straight Champions League victory.
Real beat Liverpool 3-1 in Kiev but it proved to be the Portuguese superstar’s last game for the club.
He’s since revealed that a lack of support from Perez was behind his decision to leave for Juventus.
And journalist Duncan Castles thinks Ronaldo’s comments in the past week about his Real exit have added to the Madrid president’s woe in the week he sacked manager Julen Lopetegui.
“‘The reason I left the club was because I felt the president of the club no longer wanted me there’”
Duncan Castles on Cristiano Ronaldo
He said on the latest episode of the Transfer Window Podcast: “I don’t think it’s any coincidence that if you look at France Football this week you’ll see an interview from Cristiano Ronaldo where he very much sticks the knife into Florentino Perez saying ‘the reason I left the club was because I felt the president of the club no longer wanted me there’.
“You’re looking at the worst start to a season in years for Real Madrid, the president made a decision to allow the club’s best player (to go), the best player is reminding everyone about that decision at the point the president is under severe pressure to sort things.”
Juventus have won 12 out of their 13 games in all competitions this season since signing Ronaldo, but coach Massimiliano Allegri said he was still worried that “drops in intensity” could cost his team an eighth successive Serie A title.
Allegri was clearly concerned about last week’s 2-1 win at lowly Empoli where Juventus needed a contentious penalty and a moment of individual brilliance from Ronaldo to turn the game around after trailing at half-time.
“We can’t afford to drop points along the way,” said Allegri, whose side lead Serie A by eight points from Inter Milan and Napoli and host Cagliari on Saturday.
“We’ve had dangerous drops in intensity which could cost us the championship. We need to show great respect and keep our concentration high to win these games, which you can only win on the pitch.”
He reminded reporters that winning should never be considered routine.
“You saw how much trouble we had against Empoli, it shows that winning is never easy,” he said. “For our opponents, winning against Juventus is always a big achievement.
“Cagliari are difficult opponents,” he added. “They are the team which run the most in the championship and are very dangerous in the area.”