Ronaldo hopes to end career in Madrid

Cristiano Ronaldo celebrating after winning his fourth Club World Cup trophy on Saturday.
Cristiano Ronaldo celebrating after winning his fourth Club World Cup trophy on Saturday.PHOTO: REUTERS

ABU DHABI • Cristiano Ronaldo insisted he wants to finish his playing career at Real Madrid after scoring in their 1-0 Club World Cup final win over Gremio on Saturday.

The 32-year-old won the tournament for the fourth time and become the all-time top scorer in the competition with seven goals.

"I would really like to, but things don't depend on me. What depends on me is what I do on the pitch," said Ronaldo, when asked if he planned to retire at Madrid. "I am not the one who runs the club, that is for those in charge. My job is on the pitch and I think I am doing it well, the rest I can't control."

He signed a new deal to 2021 with the club just over a year ago, but sparked speculation over his future after leading Real to the Champions League in June due to his apparent discontent with the club's lack of involvement in a tax case brought against him by Spanish prosecutors.

He appeared in court in July over accusations that he evaded €14.7 million (S$23.3 million) in taxes between 2011 and 2014.

The Portuguese has smashed Real's records since joining from Manchester United in 2009 and is Real's all-time top scorer with 434 goals in 414 appearances. He picked up his fifth Ballon d'Or to match Barcelona Lionel Messi's record mark earlier this month.

"For us it is fundamental Cristiano stays. He is at his club, his home and no one can do what he keeps doing, so hopefully he stays here until he retires," said Real coach Zinedine Zidane.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 18, 2017, with the headline 'Ronaldo hopes to end career in Madrid'. Print Edition | Subscribe