Rape claim against soccer star Ronaldo troubles Nike

Updated October 4, 2018 - 1:36 pm

LONDON — Pressure built on Cristiano Ronaldo from his sponsors Thursday after Nike joined EA Sports in expressing its deep concern with the rape allegation facing the soccer star.

The five-time world player of the year has denied the claim. Late Thursday night, he received public backing from his Italian club, Juventus, shortly after Nike issued its statement to The Associated Press.

Nike has had a contract with the 33-year-old Ronaldo, one of the wealthiest and most famous soccer players in the world, since 2003. The latest terms signed in 2016 are worth a reported $1 billion and Ronaldo has suggested that it was a deal “for life.”

But the Beaverton, Oregon-based apparel maker is troubled by the details emerging in a lawsuit filed last week in a Nevada state court by a woman who alleges she was raped by Ronaldo in Las Vegas in 2009.

“We are deeply concerned by the disturbing allegations and will continue to closely monitor the situation,” Nike said in an emailed statement to the AP.

Ronaldo wears Nike boots and appears in its advertising.

The Portugal captain is also the face of the EA Sports FIFA video game franchise, appearing on the cover of the 2019 game that was released worldwide last week.

“We have seen the concerning report that details allegations against Cristiano Ronaldo,” EA Sports told the AP. “We are closely monitoring the situation, as we expect cover athletes and ambassadors to conduct themselves in a manner that is consistent with EA’s values.”

Whereas other players might be winding down their careers at 33, Ronaldo is still in demand by leading clubs around the world. Ronaldo made the third big transfer of this career in July, leaving Real Madrid after nine years for Juventus, a move that cost the Italian club 112 million euros (then $132 million).

Breaking its silence on the alleged assault, Juventus strongly backed its most expensive star in a Twitter statement.

”Cristiano Ronaldo has shown in recent months his great professionalism and dedication, which is appreciated by everyone at Juventus,” the Italian league champions said. “The events allegedly dating back to almost 10 years ago do not change this opinion, which is shared by anyone who has come into contact with this great champion.”

Left off Portugal team

Cristiano Ronaldo has been left off Portugal’s national soccer team squad as he fights rape allegations.

Ronaldo was left off the squad for Portugal’s second game in the UEFA Nations League at Poland on Oct. 11 and a friendly match in Glasgow against Scotland three days later. The Juventus forward also missed Portugal’s first two post-World Cup matches last month, with coach Fernando Santos saying Ronaldo had only just moved to the Italian club and was still settling down there.

Santos used the 33-year-old team captain’s absence last month to try out younger players.

ad-high_impact_4
Crime
Review held in death of man after encounter with Las Vegas police
The mother of Tashii Brown, who died after an encounter with Las Vegas police on the Strip, not satisfied after public review of evidence. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Vehicle of Interest in January Homicide
Las Vegas police released footage Friday of a “vehicle of interest” from a deadly shooting in January. (Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department)
Hostage escapes clutches of robber before shooting
Metropolitan Police Department footage shows a man wearing a motorcycle helmet, identified by police as 27-year-old Mario B. Trejo, with one arm wrapped around a woman’s neck and held a handgun to her head.
Sunset Park Vigil
A small group of people gathered in Sunset Park to remember the three children recently killed in the area.
Henderson police bodycam footage of officer-involved shooting
Henderson police released body-worn camera footage of an officer-involved shooting in a grocery store parking lot at 2667 Windmill Parkway on Aug. 12, 2018. (Henderson Police Department)
Metro Asst. Sheriff Brett Zimmerman on Aug. 8 officer-involved shooting
Metropolitan Police Department Assistant Sheriff Brett Zimmerman met with media Monday to discuss the details of the 14th officer-involved shooting of the year. (Madelyn Reese/ Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Nye County detectives pursue suspects
A swarm of Nye County deputies, at the request of Las Vegas police, surrounded a hotel room in Pahrump last week to take two fugitives into custody. (Nye County Sheriff's Office)
TOP NEWS
News Headlines
Add Event
Home Front Page Footer Listing
Circular
You May Like

You May Like