MILAN (Reuters) – Cristiano Ronaldo became involved in a public conflict with Italy’s sports minister on Friday, with the two indirectly accusing themselves of lying about whether the Portuguese striker broke the health rules after a positive test for Covid- 19.
Vincenzo Spadafora said on Thursday that the Juventus striker may have broken the rules by flying back to Italy after testing positive for the virus earlier this week. But in a post on social media on Friday Ronaldo responded and said he did everything according to the protocols.
“A gentleman here in Italy, whose name I will not mention, said that I did not obey the protocol – that is simply a lie,” said Ronaldo on Instagram of the village in Torino where he is quarantined and asymptomatic.
“I followed all the protocols and I will continue to follow them, my conscience is clear …. Everything I did was authorized.”
Ronaldo, 35, tested positive for Covid-19 on Tuesday, while with Portugal, and flew back in a private jet the next day. “I had no contact with anyone,” argued the player.
Spadafora later responded in an interview with Italian news agency Ansa.
“The fame and skill of certain players does not give them the right to be arrogant, disrespectful of institutions and to lie,” he said. “I will not continue with this issue forever,” he added.
(By Brian Homewood)