Cristiano Ronaldo has accused his former teammate, Gary Neville of using him to boost his own profile.
The claims come within the Portuguese’s bombshell interview with Piers Morgan in which he took aim at Manchester United, the club’s coach Erik ten Hag, Ralf Rangnick, and many others others.
In a fresh clip of the interview released on Monday evening, Ronaldo accused his former team-mate of criticising him only to boost his own fame before declaring him and Wayne Rooney not friends of his.
Neville and Rooney have both criticised the Portuguese in recent weeks for his increasingly petulant behaviour as well as his refusal to come on against Tottenham last month.
Ronaldo told Morgan: ‘To listen as ex-colleagues or team-mates criticise you, when they only see one point of view. It’s easy.
‘It’s easy to criticise, I don’t know if you have a job in television that they must criticise to be more famous. I really don’t understand it.
‘It’s hard when you see people who was in the dressing room with you criticising that way.’
Morgan questioned Ronaldo on whether Neville’s criticism came from a place in which he felt he could boost his own name by doing such.
‘I think they take advantage of that because they are not stupid,’ Ronaldo said. ‘I’m the No 1 followed guy in the world. It’s not by coincidence.’
In the previous excerpts, Ronaldo also expressed his anger at being criticised by former team-mate and strike partner Rooney.
‘Me too (I’m surprised about this). Piers, I don’t understand. You should ask the questions to him,’ he said. ‘I don’t know. I don’t know why he criticised me so badly.
‘Probably (it’s jealously). Probably – because he finished his career in his 30s. I’m still playing at a high level; I’m not going to say that I’m looking better than him, which is true.
‘People can have their own opinion but they don’t know what is going inside the training ground at Carrington – or even my life. They shouldn’t listen to one point of view – they should listen to my point of view as well, because it’s easy to criticise [when] you don’t know the whole story,’ he went on to say.
‘They are not my friends, they are colleagues. We play together, they’re not coming, we’re not ever having dinner together.’