Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo has exchanged WhatsApp messages with his former teammate Pepe as the club find themselves in crisis.
Off the back of a poor loss to Girona in La Liga and a humiliation at the hands of Spurs in mid-week, doubts have begun to creep in at Real Madrid – for a side that won the double last season and have won three of the last four Champions Leagues.
According to reports by Spanish publication Diario Gol, Ronaldo has slammed club president Florentino Perez in text messages with former teammate Pepe – who ended a ten-year spell with Real in the summer, transferring to Besiktas.
Ronaldo and Pepe both criticised the club’s transfer policy, as Madrid let Pepe, James Rodriguez, Danilo and Alvaro Morata leave in the summer. Zidane’s squad has been trimmed, which means the absences of Raphael Varane, Keylor Navas and Dani Carvajal have exposed Real’s lack of quality in depth.
Zidane opted to appoint youth this summer, having seen the success of blooding the up-and-coming Marco Asensio – who has scored four times for Real this season. The average age of Zizou’s signings was just 19, which Ronaldo is sceptical of – as Real need players to perform now, not years down the line in his eyes.
This has left Ronaldo with fears of a trophyless season with Los Blancos, for the first time since the 2009/10 season where Guardiola’s Barcelona were dominant. Speaking of, Barca extended their lead over Real Madrid to eight points last weekend – as Real sit third in La Liga.
Speaking after the 3-1 loss to Spurs, Ronaldo said: “We must stick together and not think that it’s such a big disaster. Losing when playing for Real Madrid is harder than with any other team, but we are used to it and I am sure we’ll come out of this run. It’s not nice but we’ll sort it out.”