Ronaldo on obscene gesture: It was a misunderstanding

Cristiano Ronaldo has described the obscene gesture that saw him suspended for a Saudi Pro League game as a “misunderstanding” and also admitted “every day I try to be a better man.”

The Al Nassr and Portugal captain was handed a one-match ban by the Saudi Arabia Football Federation for provoking rival fans by appearing to make a gesture after his team’s 3-2 league win over Riyadh rival Al Shabab on Feb. 25.

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Ronaldo, 39, served the ban, missing his team’s next league game, a 4-4 draw with Al Hazm.

“I take this opportunity to talk about the case in which I was punished for a game,” Ronaldo said in a news conference.

“What I did was a misunderstanding. I will always respect the cultures of all countries, but what people see is not always reality.”

This wasn’t the first instance in which the former Real Madrid star has been riled up in Saudi Arabia after being taunted by rival fans chanting Lionel Messi’s name.

“Sometimes the passion of the game leads us to make some mistakes, but everyone makes mistakes,” Ronaldo said. “Whenever I make them, I don’t do it on purpose. Every day I try to be a better man.”

Asked if he could improve his behaviour, Ronaldo said: “I can’t promise because I’m a human being. Nobody is perfect. Life is made of mistakes.

“What I can promise is that I am a player who gives everything on the field, a player with passion, a player who always wants to win. I’m a player who doesn’t like to see people doing unsportsmanlike things … I am happy to be in Saudi Arabia and happy to represent Al Nassr.”

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