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Cristiano Ronaldo

Ronaldo sends support to Rugani and health professionals amid coronavirus isolation

20:54 GMT+3 13/03/2020
Cristiano Ronaldo Juventus 2019-20
The Portuguese superstar has voiced his concern for the Bianconeri defender and praised the work being done by those qualified to battle the virus

Cristiano Ronaldo has sent a message of support to Juventus team-mate Daniele Rugani and to the ‘amazing’ health professionals dealing with the coronavirus outbreak.

25-year-old centre-back Rugani tested positive for the virus shortly after it was announced that Serie A was to be put on hold April at the earliest and has been in self-isolation, although his presence on the bench in a 2-0 win over Inter has seen the Nerazzurri forced to take preventative measures.

Following the postponement of Juventus’ Champions League last 16 second-leg tie against Lyon, Ronaldo – who has not contracted the virus – is remaining in isolation in his native Portugal, but made sure to reach out through social media to voice his support for his colleague, as well as health professionals around the world.

"The world is going through a very difficult moment which demands the utmost care and attention from all of us,” Ronaldo wrote in a post on social media.

"I speak to you today not as a football player, but as a son, father, a human being concerned with the latest developments that is affecting the whole world.

"It is important we all follow the advice of WHO (World Health Organization) and the governing bodies on how we handle this current situation. Protecting human life must come above any other interests.

"I would like to send my thoughts to everyone who has lost someone close to them, my solidarity to those who are fighting the virus, like my team-mate Daniele Rugani, and my continued support to the amazing health professionals putting their own lives at risk to save others.”

There had also been reports that another of Ronaldo’s Bianconeri team-mates – Argentina forward Paulo Dybala – had contracted the virus, but both the player and club have moved swiftly since to declare the rumours false.

Fellow Serie A side Sampdoria have seen five players and one staff member test positive for the virus as Italy continues to be among the worst-affected countries.

Manolo Gabbiadini was the first to test positive, before Omar Colley, Albin Ekdal, Antonino La Gumina, Morten Thorsby and Dr. Amedeo Baldari were subsequently diagnosed.