The Real Madrid manager commented on the Portuguese star’s future after the shock loss by Juventus in the Champions League.
Zinedine Zidane used to make headlines from his on-pitch performances, but his play with the media as a manager can be just as exciting.
Following the surprising upset by FC Porto over Juventus in the Champions League, the Frenchman took the opportunity to tell Sky Sports Italia that rumours of a Ronaldo return to Madrid 'may be true.'
A move back home
Ronaldo, 36, left Real in 2018 for a reported £100 million deal to Juventus. The five-time Ballon d’Or winner experienced great success in Madrid, winning five Champions League and two La Liga titles since joining the club in 2009.
The hope for Juventus was that Ronaldo would bring that success, particularly in Europe, to the Allianz Stadium in Turin. The exit in the round of 16 last week, however, marks the third consecutive year the club failed to pass the quarterfinals stage of the competition.
Spanish publication AS reported that the transfer back to Real has been ongoing for months and that Ronaldo privately has expressed his desire to return.
The CEO of Juventus, Fabio Paratici, responded to the speculation, stating that the club 'will hold on tight' to Ronaldo and that he has a contract until 2022. Juventus manager Andrea Pirlo also dismissed the speculation and said it is normal after any loss.
Ronaldo himself broke his silence with an Instagram post. He wrote:
More important than the number of falls you take in life, is how fast and strong you get back on your feet ... True champions never break! Our focus is already on Cagliari, in the Serie A struggle, in the Italian Cup final, and in everything we can still achieve this season.
Real woes in front of goal
Zidane and his team could use a forward like Ronaldo, who has 30 goals in all competitions this season. Real has struggled to find the net as Karim Benzema leads the team with 20 goals.
Players that were signed to replace the Portuguese striker since his 2018 departure, such as Eden Hazard and Vinícius Júnior, have failed to live up to expectations.