Cristiano Ronaldo will be in peak condition for the World Cup and Portugal can “rest easy” about what he will bring at Qatar 2022, says Selecao legend Luis Figo.
Superstar forward Ronaldo has found himself out of the team at Manchester United in recent weeks, following on from a pre-season of uncertainty.
The 37-year-old reportedly wanted to depart Old Trafford just 12 months after returning in order to find a move to a club playing in the Champions League.
A move failed to materialise, though, and Ronaldo’s only start this season under new boss Erik ten Hag came in the humiliating 4-0 defeat at Brentford.
That is partly explained by the fact Ronaldo missed much of United’s pre-season due to personal reasons, but the Red Devils have chalked up four straight wins with the legendary forward out of the starting XI.
With a little over two months until Fernando Santos’ side begin their World Cup campaign against Ghana, Portugal fans will hope their leading man is afforded more starts.
Real Madrid great Figo is confident he will be in prime form for the tournament.
Speaking at the FPF Football Talks 2022 in Lisbon, Figo said: “I have no doubt about Cristiano [Ronaldo]’s quality, commitment and professionalism.
“I’m sure he’ll be at the World Cup in the best possible [physical] condition. What will those conditions be? I don’t know.
“But without a doubt, given his quality and professionalism, as I said, Portugal can rest easy about what he can give to the Selecao.”
Portugal needed to win a play-off against North Macedonia to book their spot in Qatar but, in a tournament considered wide open by most pundits, the Selecao will fancy their chances of a deep run.
Figo is also sure they can be a force to be reckoned with in Qatar.
“I think Portugal has one of the best teams in the world. But a Euro and a World Cup depend on many factors. Not only on individual and collective quality,” he added.
“I hope that Portugal, after a complicated qualification phase, can show its value, that we can achieve our goals, that is to say, reach the final and win this World Cup.”
During his playing days, Figo was involved in one of the most controversial transfers in football history when he swapped Barcelona for Clasico rivals Real Madrid for a then world-record fee back in July 2000.
The story of the move has been retold in the Netflix documentary ‘The Figo Affair: The Transfer that Changed Football’.
Asked how he felt about the situation having relived it via the show, Figo said: “I lived it so I don’t feel any different.
“Of course, those who didn’t live it, who have spoken and criticised, will have a different feeling. But my feeling is the same as 22 years ago.”