Cristiano wanted a new challenge and Neymar will come back stronger - Ronaldo

(C)Getty Images
The former Brazil legend also backed Jose Mourinho to find more great success and believes his former team-mate Zidane will soon return to the bench

Brazil legend Ronaldo has backed Neymar to come back from his World Cup controversies stronger than ever – and insisted Cristiano Ronaldo was ready for a new challenge.

Neymar earned global headlines for his apparent histrionics after he was repeatedly targeted by opposition defenders as Brazil were eliminated from the World Cup in the quarter-finals.

And Ronaldo believes the PSG forward will bounce back from his disappointments this term.

“I’m sure Neymar listened to all his critics and he’ll try to improve his overall level,” Ronaldo told Goal.

“I think you have to try to improve and learn from your mistakes. He has yet a lot to learn, he’s still young and I wish him best of luck for this season,” added the two-time World Cup-winner and UEFA Champions League ambassador for Santander.

Former Barcelona, Real Madrid, Inter and Milan man Ronaldo went on to suggest that his namesake Cristiano appeared ready for a new challenge when he swapped the Spanish capital for Juventus in the summer.

Ronaldo Santander 2

“I don’t need to give advice to Cristiano Ronaldo because he’s a great player with a lot of experience and he is joining a great team,” he said.

“I don’t know his motivation [for making the move], but I think that maybe after winning almost everything with Real Madrid one would want a change, to look for a new challenge.

“I wish him best of luck for his new adventure in Italy. I played there for some time and I have a lot of affection for the country and for the people.”

Article continues below

Ronaldo also backed Jose Mourinho to overcome his current issues at Manchester United and insisted his former team-mate Zinedine Zidane will soon return to the bench after leaving Real Madrid this summer.

“Mourinho is really special, he has achieved important things and I think it will be the same in the future,” Ronaldo said.

“Zidane is taking his time and soon a club will call on him. Obviously, he can go wherever he wants. He has proved is also a phenomenon as coach [as he was as a player].”