CRISTIANO RONALDO SAYS he wants to stay with Real Madrid until the end of his contract with the club.
The 27-year-old Portuguese striker’s contract with Real runs out in June 2015 but Spanish media have reported that he is unhappy at the club and may leave at the end of the season.
The player has been linked to a move to Paris Saint-Germain or back to Manchester United.
“I want to see out my contract at Real Madrid: I’m very clear about that. After that, well, I don’t know what will happen in the future,” he said in an interview published on Fifa.com.
Ronaldo, who joined Real Madrid from Manchester United in 2009, said he still believes it is possible for the club to win La Liga despite falling 18 points behind leaders and archrivals Barcelona.
“We haven’t started the championship very well for sure. We know that La Liga’s an uphill struggle for us now, but nothing is impossible in football,” he said.
“We’re going to work hard, win games and see what happens. And of course, there’s the Champions League and the Copa del Rey too. There’s plenty for us to win this season.”
Real Madrid are in third place in the Spanish league, four points behind second-placed Atletico Madrid and have dropped even further behind Barcelona after they were held to a 0-0 draw at relegation-threatened Osasuna Osasuna on Saturday.
They looked a shadow of the team that romped to the Liga title last season.
Ronaldo also defended Real’s Portuguese coach Jose Mourinho, who was jeered last month for benching goalkeeper Iker Casillas, a world and European champion with Spain, in what was seen as an attempt to assert his authority.
Many Real Madrid fans are unhappy at Mourinho’s combative style and frequent insinuations of referee bias against his side and there are rumours of a rift in the dressing room with heavyweights like Casillas and Sergio Ramos complaining about his aloof style.
Nearly two-thirds of Real Madrid’s members believe Mourinho has a negative impact on the club’s image, according to a survey published in Spanish sports daily Marca earlier this month.
“People do protest and you have to respect that, though I think they should be a bit patient with him,” Ronaldo said.
“To me it’s very clear that Mourinho always wants what’s best for the club and will fight to the death to defend it. All of us who work alongside him know that, but you’ve still got to show respect for the fans’ opinion.
“In my view he’s the best coach in the world, he’s got loads of experience and has won everything there is to win.”
Real Madrid will face Premier League leaders Manchester United in the first leg of their Champions League last 16 clash on February 13.
“No team’s unbeatable, but when we’re at our best we’re a really good side. Manchester United have started the English championship race very well and are a long way ahead of the rest, but still, if we play the way we’re capable of, we can beat them,” Ronaldo said.
“To do that we need to pull together and play as a team, like we’ve done in so many matches before.”
Ronaldo lost out to Lionel Messi for the fourth year in a row at the Ballon d’Or awards last week.