Cristiano Ronaldo will not play in Manchester United’s Premier League clash with Liverpool at Anfield on Tuesday following the death of his newborn son.
The forward announced the tragic news on social media on Monday in a joint message with his partner Georgina Rodriguez, prompting a huge number of messages of support from across the footballing world and beyond.
Manchester United confirmed Ronaldo’s absence, saying on manutd.com: “Family is more important than everything and Ronaldo is supporting his loved ones at this immensely difficult time.
You have our complete love and support, @Cristiano ❤
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) April 19, 2022
“As such, we can confirm that he will not feature in the match against Liverpool at Anfield on Tuesday evening and we underline the family’s request for privacy.
“Cristiano, we are all thinking of you and sending strength to the family.”
Ronaldo, who has four older children, announced last October that he and Rodriguez were expecting twins. Their baby girl survived.
The couple said on Monday: “It is with our deepest sadness we have to announce that our baby boy has passed away.
“It is the greatest pain that any parents can feel.
“Only the birth of our baby girl gives us the strength to live this moment with some hope and happiness.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) April 18, 2022
“We would like to thank the doctors and nurses for all their expert care and support.
“We are all devastated at this loss and we kindly ask for privacy at this very difficult time.
“Our baby boy, you are our angel. We will always love you.”
All of us here at Liverpool FC send our deepest condolences to you, Georgina and the family ❤️
— Liverpool FC (@LFC) April 18, 2022
A message on United’s Twitter account on Monday evening read: “Your pain is our pain, Cristiano.
Sending love and strength to you and the family at this time.”
The 37-year-old’s United team-mate Marcus Rashford tweeted: “Thoughts are with you and Georgina brother. I’m so sorry.”
Thoughts are with you and Georgina brother ♥️ I’m so sorry
— Marcus Rashford MBE (@MarcusRashford) April 18, 2022
Ronaldo’s former club Real Madrid said in a statement: “Real Madrid, its president and board of directors are deeply saddened by the passing of one of the children that our dear Cristiano Ronaldo and his partner, Georgina Rodriguez, were expecting.
“Real Madrid shares in the family’s pain and wishes to send them all of our warmth.”
Manchester City, Liverpool, Leeds and the Premier League were among many others sending the couple messages of condolence on Twitter.