Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo is experiencing a rough patch and here are three reasons why the Portuguese has been a shadow of his usual self in recent weeks.
Ronaldo has only scored four goals and assisted a further two in eight matches since the turn of the year.
Many have asked what has changed since November last year, so we took a look.
1) Ballon d’Or
Following his Ballon d’Or win back in 2013, Ronaldo experienced a similar dip in form, scoring only seven goals and assisting four in the months of January and February 2014. It seems as if Ronaldo regularly hits his heights in the months that build-up to the prestigious award, while falling into a downward spiral after hitting the peak.
2) Break up with Irina Shayk
On 21January, Ronaldo released a statement that he and his long-term girlfriend Irina Shayk had broken up. There had already been a lot of speculation as the Portuguese appeared without Shayk at this year’s Ballon d’Or gala. Coincidently, Ronaldo scored his last goal for Real Madrid on 18 January, three days before the official announcement of the break-up.
3) Ongoing knee problems
As always, when the Portuguese experiences a dip in form, talks about his ongoing knee problems (tendonitis) arise. The issue hindered Ronaldo at the final stages of last season, as well as at the World Cup. Ronaldo and Carlo Ancelotti continuously downplay the issue, but the player recently revealed that he risked his career by playing in the Champions League final, as well as in Brazil.
Do you think Ronaldo will overcome his issues and start firing again? Have your say in the comments section below.