The Portuguese Football Federation have revealed that Cristiano Ronaldo is suffering from tendinosis in his left kneecap as well as a muscle injury in his left thigh, bringing the fitness of the superstar into question ahead of their World Cup opener against Germany on June 16.
The 29-year-old forward missed Portugal’s 0-0 draw with Greece last week after complaining of aches and pains in his left leg. Although Portugal were aware of Ronaldo’s thigh injury sustained late into the season, it was the first time he had been diagnosed with patellar tendinosis.
The report released by the FPF also confirmed injuries to stars Pepe, Beto, and Raul Meireles.The four underwent individual training at the New York Jets’ Training Center in an effort to get them back to full fitness before the World Cup kicks off.
James Gallagher, a Health and Science reporter for BBC, shed some light on the extent of Ronaldo’s injury and how it could affect his World Cup hopes:
“Tendinosis is caused by long-term wear and tear of the tendon. Low levels of damage build up if there is insufficient recovery time between matches,” told Gallagher.
“Recovery times for tendinosis depend on the scale of the damage, but in the most severe cases could be several months.”
However, Portuguese teammate and Manchester United winger Nani is confident that Ronaldo will be ready as ever for the tournament:
“We hope that Cristiano is in good enough shape to play - and to help the team,” he said.
“[Ronaldo] is going well, and he is relaxed about it … things are going the right way.”
Ronaldo, who won the Ballon d’Or in January, led Spanish giants Real Madrid to their tenth Champions League title last month despite minor leg injuries at the end of the season.
The Portuguese National Team are currently in the United States, where they will play friendlies against Mexico this Friday and Ireland on Tuesday before heading to Brazil for the 2014 FIFA World Cup.
Drawn into Group G, Portugal will face Germany, USA, and Ghana in the group stages of the tournament. A strong showing in their first game will be crucial to achieving success in Brazil.