Bruno Fernandes didn’t join international teammate Cristiano Ronaldo in the celebration huddle after he scored Portugal’s opening goal against Ghana on Thursday night. It came in their World Cup group opener, with the opposition proving a hard side to break down in the first hour.
Ronaldo had plenty of chances, but failed to take any until he was put through on goal and brought down just after 60 minutes into the game. The referee pointed to the spot and the 37-year-old stepped up to take the spot kick, despite Fernandes also having a record from the spot.
The whole team rushed over to celebrate with the goal scorer, but Fernandes was the odd one out as he didn’t join in the huddle, instead choosing to celebrate from the outside. It comes after questions rose over the pair’s friendship after Ronaldo saw his contract at Manchester United terminated by mutual consent.
The Portugal international’s outburst in an exclusive interview with Piers Morgan led to his position in the United team being untenable, calling out the club and his manager. Shortly after the decision, he met up with his national team squad where many made a point surrounding a video in him meeting Fernandes, claiming it was “awkward”.
They went on to clarify that wasn’t the case as Joao Mario told reporters: “It was a joke between them because Bruno (Fernandes) was late, one of the last to arrive, and Cristiano (Ronaldo) asked him if he had came by boat. I understand that the images can be interpreted in many ways, but it was a joke between them. They have a great relationship because they play together, I saw them all day yesterday. There is no problem between them.”
When asked himself as to whether he agrees with his national teammate or his club side, Fernandes responded: “I don’t feel uncomfortable. I don’t have to pick a side. It was a dream come true to play with Cristiano [at Manchester United ] but nothing lasts forever.”