Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo has hit out at suggestions his recent declaration that he was unhappy at Real Madrid was part of a ploy to earn a lucrative new contract.
After the game on Sunday Ronaldo said:
‘I’m sad – when I don’t celebrate goals it’s because I’m not happy. It’s a professional thing. Real Madrid know why I’m not happy.’
Since his outburst, there has since been a media backlash in Madrid, where the front page of ‘Marca’, the pro-Real sports daily screamed: ‘Enough is Enough’ and criticising Ronaldo for ‘unsettling’ the club.
Today Ronaldo responded via his Facebook page, dismissing claims his stance was money-related writing:
‘I am accused of wanting more money, but one day it will be shown that this is not the case.
‘At this point, I just want to guarantee to the Real Madrid fans that my motivation, dedication, commitment and desire to win all competitions will not be affected.
‘I have too much respect for myself and for Real Madrid to ever give less to the club than all I am capable of.’
Don’t be fooled by all this. This is ultimately about money.
Ronaldo wants to be the highest paid player in the world, and with just under three years left on his current deal, this is the time that contract negotiations begin. Ronaldo’s statement after the game on Sunday was the first move in that negotiation.
Ronaldo signed a six year deal with Real Madrid when he moved from Manchester United that pays him £9.6m a year, which is the same as Kaka. That translates to about £7.2m net after tax.
Since he signed that deal, there are at least six players (Samuel Eto’o, Wayne Rooney, Robin van Persie, Carlos Tevez, Yaya Toure and Zlatan Ibrahimovic) who currently earn more than Ronaldo’s.
Reports out of Spain say that Ronaldo wants a pay increase to £12m net a year. Even under existing Spanish tax rules, that would mean £14.5m a year gross wages. Which is not unreasonable from his current level.
The problem for Real Madrid is that, in two years’ time, the “Beckham tax loophole” ends, which means that Ronaldo’s tax rate will jump from 24% to 52% per cent.
So to get to the same £12m after tax wages, Real Madrid will have to pay Ronaldo almost £25m a year, or £480,000 a WEEK. I am not sure that even a club as wealthy as Real Madrid can pay a player that kind of money, especially with Uefa’s Financial Fair Rules coming into effect.