Updated Oct 22nd 2018, 8:00 PM
CRISTIANO RONALDO THIS evening stated he is an “example” in his behaviour on and off the field amid allegations of rape made against the five-time Ballon d’Or winner in the United States.
“I know I am an example, 100 percent, in the pitch and outside the pitch,” Ronaldo told a press conference ahead of his return to Manchester United, where he spent six years as a player, with Juventus in the Champions League.
A former American model Kathryn Mayorga, 34, of Las Vegas, accused Ronaldo, in a 32-page complaint filed last month with a district court in Nevada, of raping her on 13 June 2009 just before he joined Real Madrid from United.
Ronaldo strenuously denied the allegations in a statement just over two weeks ago and has been backed by his club.
“I am always smiling, I am happy man, I’m blessed that I play in a fantastic club, I have a fantastic family, I have four kids, I am healthy,” added Ronaldo, at Old Trafford this evening.
“I have everything. So the rest, it doesn’t interfere on me. I’m very, very well.”
The accusation hasn’t so far affected Ronaldo’s form on the field for his new club, who he joined from Madrid for €112 million in July.
Ronaldo has scored five goals in his last six Serie A appearances, but has yet to open his account in the Champions League after being sent-off just 30 minutes into his European debut against Valencia.
“I’m not going to lie in this situation,” he added. “My lawyers they are confident and of course I am, too.
“The most important (thing) is I enjoy the football, I enjoy my life.
“The rest, I have people who take care of my life. Of course, the truth is always coming in the first position. So, I’m good.”
Ronaldo made his name in Manchester with United, winning three Premier League titles and the first of his five Champions Leagues.
On his only previous return with Madrid in 2013, Ronaldo received a hero’s welcome, but went on to score the winning goal as Real progressed 3-2 on aggregate in a contentious Champions League last 16 tie.
“To return here to Manchester is a huge emotion. When I saw the draw, I remembered the history I made here,” he added.
“I won all the trophies here: Champions League, leagues, cups, I remembered the fans and I remembered one of the people who helped me most, Sir Alex Ferguson.”
Defeat to Madrid five years ago was Ferguson’s final European game in charge and since his retirement, United have fallen on hard times.
After short-lived tenures for David Moyes and Louis Van Gaal, United manager Jose Mourinho is now battling to save his job with the Red Devils languishing in 10th in the Premier League.
By contrast, Juventus failed to win for the first time this season in all competitions in a 1-1 draw (Ronaldo scoring) with Genoa on Saturday, but United retain Ronaldo’s respect.
“We have to respect Man United. They are a fantastic team, they have an experienced coach but I expect and hope Juventus win the game.”
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