The Lack Of Love For Cristiano Ronaldo Is Taxing Him

By Mark Cruise
Image by Cristiano-Ronaldo on Flickr

Cristiano Ronaldo is really sad you guys. He isn’t sad because Real Madrid have already given up their league title won from last year. He’s not sad because having drawn a blank in front of goal he’s now miles behind Lionel Messi in the goalscoring charts. He’s sad because he’s not feeling the love.

CR7 (to use his ‘brandname’)is unlucky in that he is one of the most gifted players to ever grace a football field, but he is always just behind Messi, who is not only his contemporary but plays in the same league and for his biggest rival. He also plays in Spain at a time when the Spanish national side are arguably one of the greatest national teams to have ever played the game, and he’s not Spanish.

Ronaldo was upset when FIFA were handing out the awards last year, and he felt Real did not support him enough in his campaign to win whatever pointless bauble the suits were handing out. The gongs insteaed went to Messi (of course) and selected members of the Spanish national side. In my mind (and I suspect to most people), FIFA awards matter not a jot, but perhaps when you have talent, looks, an underpants deal and money, then awards are the only thing left.

The other thing that’s making him furrow his well moisturized brow is the subject of money. You see, Spain has a top tax rate of 52%. Until recently, there has been an exemption for footballers (ironically called the ‘Beckham exemption’ – a man who is a model for how to turn a footballer into a ‘brand’). However, as you may have heard, Spain is a bit short of cash at the moment and so this exemption for the mega rich is gone.

Ronaldo is looking for a pay raise going from roughly $12m to $24m. The thing is, he’d quite like to not get stung for the extra tax – so he’s expecting Los Merengues to foot the bill. Real have said they are happy to look into him being able to write off some of the tax (something to do with image rights that I don’t quite get), but for now are not willing to just hand over that much cash. Ronaldo is so far not impressed and no new contract has been offered.

He has spoken publicly about not feeling loved by the club, but so far, the fans seem unsympathetic. These are the same fans that have on occasion booed Zinedine Zidane and Jose Mourinho, so they pretty much boo whoever they feel like. It’s fair to assume though that even wealthy Real fans are feeling the pinch at the moment and can’t empathize with a millionaire holding out for more millions.

If Ronaldo really wanted to feel loved, there are many things he could do. He could forgo his wages for a year, and put it towards helping unemployed Madrid fans. A sixth of his current annual wage would keep Real Oviedo or Porstmouth FC (or any Greek side)afloat and would gain him the admiration of football fans the world over. That is of course, if it’s not just about wanting more money

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