Enraged Ronaldo fans point finger after nightmare World Cup draw
Fans of football superstar Cristiano Ronaldo have reacted with outrage after the play-off draw for the 2022 World Cup put his country Portugal on the same path as Italy.
Portugal will face Turkey and Italy do battle with North Macedonia first off, with the winners of each match meeting in a final.
As a consequence, this means that one of the two last Euros champions will not be heading to Qatar in winter next year.
READ MORE: Portugal handed horror play-off draw with Italy
Not getting any younger at 36, the 2022 World Cup could be CR7's last chance to win the highest prize in world football after becoming a continental champion in 2016.
Bracing themselves for the worst and Euro 2020 holders Italy turfing Portugal out, Ronaldo's loyal devotees have reacted on social media at what they perceive to be a lack of justice for their man given the way events worked against Portugal.
Italy and Portugal have been drawn in the same qualifying path in World Cup playoffs.One of them won't be going to the 2022 World Cup 🤯 pic.twitter.com/0W4Oh4XJ3k— B/R Football (@brfootball) November 26, 2021
Most of the rage centered on an incident earlier this year when Fernando Santos' men played Serbia, who qualified automatically following their 2-1 win in Lisbon in the return fixture a fortnight ago.
Their first meeting in Group A finished a 2-2 draw in Belgrade, but Ronaldo was left seething when his goal was incorrectly ruled out with seconds to spare despite replays showing the ball had crossed the line.
Throwing the captain's armband to the ground in disgust, Ronaldo was criticized at home by some pundits in a row that his elder sister Katia Aveiro waded into.
Ok so apparently a stupid refree mistake is on border of stopping Ronaldo from his last wc pic.twitter.com/JHkWcMcWcG— CR7(G.O.A.T)🐐 (@ronaldo_goat___) November 26, 2021
Ronaldo is gonna miss a world cup because a shit stadium didn't have freaking goal-line technology. pic.twitter.com/k2HchqpvR4— ⚡DNT⚡ (@soulsonicc) November 26, 2021
"Ronaldo is gonna miss a world cup because a sh*t stadium didn't have freaking goal-line technology," scoffed a sympathizer on Twitter.
"OK, so apparently a stupid referee mistake is on the border of stopping Ronaldo from [heading to] his last World Cup," was another similar remark.
Conspiracy theorists - FIFA want Italy and Portugal to qualify for the World Cup. Play-Off draw - Italy meet Portugal for WC spot if both win semis..— Mark Ogden (@MarkOgden_) November 26, 2021
Some preferred to look for positives where they could, however.
"If Cristiano Ronaldo somehow manages to take down Italy, yes Ronaldo, (not Portugal), then he deserves the 2022 Ballon D’or by default.
"Not even joking," quipped one onlooker.
If Cristiano Ronaldo somehow manages to take down Italy, yes Ronaldo, (Not Portugal), then he deserves the 2022 Ballon D’or by defaultNot even joking— J. (@CertifiedFreakJ) November 26, 2021
He could have taken down Serbia if he is all that pic.twitter.com/3t2khHoHII— K3N (@Oluwa_ken) November 26, 2021
When this was mocked by Messi fans, Ronaldo's gang said that winning this playoff run is harder than lifting the Copa America, as has probably been enough for Messi to get the France Football gong for the world's best player set to be awarded in Paris on Monday.
"He could have taken down Serbia if he was all that," concluded another hater.