Will Cristiano Ronaldo Play at Euro 2024?


Rarely do we ask whether a 39-year-old footballer will influence a major tournament. But Cristiano Ronaldo is no ordinary footballer.

The Portugal legend scored twice as his team secured their place at Euro 2024 with a 3-2 win over Slovakia. But by the time the tournament comes around, he’ll be 39. So, will he play, and can he still make a difference at the top level?

Ronaldo in the Saudi Pro League

As expected, Ronaldo has taken the Saudi Pro League by storm. But there is no doubt that the quality of the competition is a step down.

Having spent the bulk of his career in the Premier League and La Liga, Ronaldo will bow out at a lower level. The Saudi Pro League offers a chance for big money and participation in an emerging league, but the lower quality is less challenging for top players and won’t help keep their skills sharp.


What are Portugal’s chances of winning the tournament?

They’re not one of the favourites but outside the top four, Portugal are considered a decent outside bet. Most pundits agree the top four candidates are England, France, Spain and Germany. For many, Portugal are in the next tranche of likely winners. Betting sites like www.premierbet.co.mz  have Portugal as close outsiders. But this is largely based on Ronaldo playing.


Spain looked good in qualifying but were poor in the last World Cup and have an inexperienced side. Germany look to be in a bit of a rut and are only considered potential winners due to home advantage. So, Portugal may fancy their chances of taking home the trophy. It’s hard to see them doing that without their talisman.

What has been said about Ronaldo’s potential involvement?

Not much has been said either way. Portugal boss Roberto Martinez has made no guarantees that Ronaldo will be selected. Neither has he indicated anything to the contrary. Leaving Ronaldo behind would be a brave decision. But that’s very unlikely.

Were Ronaldo omitted from the squad, there would be outrage among fans. But he may have a lesser role in the upcoming tournament than what we’re used to seeing. If Portugal progress, they’ll need to keep their star player in peak condition. After all, games come thick and fast in tournament football.

As for Ronaldo, if his intentions were to retire from international football before the tournament, you'd think we’d know by now.

If picked, he’ll be the oldest outfield player in the history of the competition

The oldest outfield player to appear in the European Championship is Lothar Matthaus. The German was 39 years and 130 days old when he took to the field in 2000 against Portugal. When Euro 2024 kicks off, Cristiano Ronaldo will be 39 years and 130 days old. So, as soon he steps on the field, he’ll break that record.

Ronaldo, though, will be more concerned with trying to win the tournament. Provided he stays fit, it’s unthinkable that we won’t get one last chance to see him grace the international stage.


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