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Ronaldo sells stake in Cruzeiro

Xinhua | Updated: 2024-04-30 16:59
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RIO DE JANEIRO - Former Brazil striker Ronaldo has sold his controlling stake in Cruzeiro, the club that launched his celebrated professional career.

The 47-year-old, who acquired 90% of Cruzeiro's shares for around 70 million US dollars in 2021, sold his participation to BPW Sports in a deal reportedly worth 117 million dollars.

"Ronaldo and BPW Sports signed an agreement to acquire all the shares of Tara Sports Brasil, the company that owns 90% of Cruzeiro SAF," the Brazilian Serie A club said in a statement on Monday.

"[Ronaldo] led an administration that brought a new perspective to the club, implementing professional management and a governance structure in line with international best practice. Cruzeiro's credibility was restored, attracting important partners and sponsors, with contracts that set record figures for the club."

The two-time World Cup winner helped pay off Cruzeiro's 195 million-dollar debt and oversaw its return to Brazil's top flight after three seasons in Serie B.

But some fans have accused Ronaldo of not investing as much as he initially promised as Cruzeiro have mostly failed to impress since earning promotion in 2022.

"Maybe some [Cruzeiro fans] have exaggerated a little going against me, but this is irrelevant to me," Ronaldo told a news conference.

"I know most fans are grateful to me and my team for putting Cruzeiro back in the national and international scene. My goal was reached. That was always the idea - to bring Cruzeiro back and, at the right time, give it to the right person."

Ronaldo revealed that he also plans to offload his majority interest in Spanish club Valladolid, without providing details.

"Valladolid is next. Then I will take some time off," he added.

Ronaldo began his playing career at Cruzeiro in 1993, scoring 56 goals in 58 matches across all competitions for the Belo Horizonte club before moving to PSV Eindhoven in July 1994.

The striker later represented Barcelona, Inter Milan, Real Madrid, AC Milan and Corinthians before retiring in 2011 following a series of debilitating knee injuries and thyroid problems.

He scored 62 goals in 98 matches for Brazil and was a member of the national team's triumphant 1994 and 2002 World Cup campaigns.

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