Cristiano Ronaldo has reportedly upped the ante in his war of words with Antonio Cassano and ordered the Italian to give him some ‘respect’.
The pair have been at loggerheads for a while. The former Milan, Inter and Italy forward questioned Ronaldo’s commitment to the cause while he was at Juventus. He suggested the Portugal skipper was a ‘selfish’ player, who only cared about the team when he scored himself.
And the controversial ex-Roma ace also stated that Ronaldo is not one of the five top players in the history of the game. He ranked Lionel Messi, Pele, Diego Maradona, Johan Cruyff and Brazilian Ronaldo ahead of the Manchester United star.
The former Real Madrid forward crossed the 800-goal threshold on Thursday when netting a brace for the Red Devils. Ronaldo now has 801 ahead of Sunday’s visit of Crystal Palace.
And it seems as though he has had enough of being put down by Cassano. Football Italia are reporting quotes from Cassano that Ronaldo got hold of his phone number from Gianluigi Buffon.
He is said to have texted the Italian, venting his spleen at the perceived criticism.
Cassano told Bobo TV (via The Mail): “The other day I saw a text from a Spanish number. Four long texts. Let’s see if he (Ronaldo) confirms it because I also forwarded them to Gigi (Buffon), who told me he had given my number to Cristiano.
“He (Ronaldo) told me I had to respect him, I had to respect the goals he had scored, what he had won and what he represents.”
Cassano stands his ground
Cassano and Ronaldo clearly do not see eye to eye. There is no doubting that the latter holds all the bragging rights when it comes to their respective playing careers.
But it appears as though Cassano has no intention of backing down.
“I fear nobody and I replied, writing I had just said the truth: there is only one Ronaldo (Brazilian) and Messi is better than him,” he added. “He continued saying that he has money. He scored more many goals in his career, while I had only scored 150.
“Cristiano has everything in life. He should take it easy and be relaxed rather than see what people say about him. He should be like Messi and be more relaxed.”
And the 39-year-old has made it clear that he is no great fan of the five-time Ballon d’Or winner.
“This is the truth, I called Buffon and told him too, I told Giorgio Chiellini as well,” he continued. “I’ve never disrespected him, as a man or as a footballer. I don’t like him, there are 50 players I like more than he, so what?”
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