Cristiano Ronaldo is the most capped played in Portugal's soccer history. But he's been left off the squad for upcoming friendlies against Poland (Oct. 11) and Scotland (Oct. 14), according to reports. The omission comes on the heels of a resurfaced accusation in German newspaper Der Speigel, where Kathryn Mayorga details the night Ronaldo allegedly raped her while she was on vacation in Las Vegas. Mayorga also says she plans to file a civil suit against the Juventus star, and Las Vegas police on Tuesday confirmed they've reopened the sexual assault case against the famous futboler.
In response, Ronaldo has threatened a lawsuit of his own against the German periodical, and even repeated the shrill cry of "fake news," most often now repeated inside the beltway. On Wednesday, he defended himself on Twitter:
Despite the omission from the national team in the upcoming friendlies, Portuguese Football Federation president Fernando Gomes has provided "total solidarity" towards Ronaldo as "his good name and reputation are being questioned."
"I believe in the words issue [sic] yesterday," he said in a statement. "Not only because I defend the presumption of innocent as a basic principle of a state of law, but also because I have known Ronaldo for many years and I am a witness to his good character."
Likewise, Ronaldo's Serie A team was supportive of their "great champion" in a pair of tweets on Thursday:
The first-person narrative by Mayorga is a follow up to the story Der Speigel published a year ago (here's an abbreviated English version) first publicizing the $375,000 out-of-court settlement—including a non-disclosure agreement—Ronaldo reached with Mayorga in 2010. As detailed by Deadspin last week, some of the admissions Ronaldo made to lawyers in a September 2009 questionnaire—which pointedly differ from his later rebukes—are particularly damning, and lend credibility to Mayorga's claim the sex was nonconsensual. The names were codified in the legal document to protect the defendant, but Ronaldo reportedly said, “She said no and stop several times," as well as a concession that she "said that she didn’t want to, but she made herself available.” And further: “But she kept saying ‘no.’ ‘Don’t do it.’ ‘I’m not like the others.’ I apologized afterwards.”
Mayorga, who left her job as a teacher and has gone into hiding, also told Der Speigel she's suffered from chronic depression and post-traumatic stress disorder since the alleged assault. "I've had like these serious breakdowns," she said. "And again, blaming of the rape. And I blame him, and I blame myself for signing [the settlement].”
Ronaldo missed a Champions League match against Swiss side BSC Young Boys on Tuesday, after a red card suspension, but he'll return to the pitch for Juventus on Saturday against Udinese.