What next for Cristiano Ronaldo?

If it were down to Cristiano Ronaldo, he would only play Champions League football.

Just to qualify for the competition next season, Juventus had to win their Serie A finale away to Bologna last weekend and hope results elsewhere went their way. It was a big game, the kind that a competitor such as Ronaldo rarely misses, and yet coach Andrea Pirlo left him out.

Ronaldo was apparently exhausted. “Cristiano’s fine,” Juventus’s departing chief football officer Fabio Paratici said. “It’s just that he’s played five games in 19 days and Wednesday’s cup final (against Atalanta) was really tiring.” Still, the decision came as a surprise. Ronaldo is 36 but he prides himself on his fitness and powers of recovery, not to mention his ability to deliver in big moments.

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