Ronaldo: Brazil mistaken to restart football

Brazilian football great Ronaldo has criticised the return of football in his homeland as the country grapples with the biggest coronavirus outbreak in Latin America.

Brazil’s three-month football hiatus ended on Thursday when Flamengo played Bangu in Rio de Janeiro’s Carioca championship at the Maracana stadium, reports Xinhua news agency.

“I am against the return of Carioca football and Brazilian football given the situation the country is in right now,” Ronaldo said during an event in Madrid. “Brazil is following the examples of other countries in Europe but it isn’t taking the pandemic into consideration.”

Brazil has more than 983,000 confirmed coronavirus cases and over 47,000 deaths from the pandemic.

Ronaldo, who is the owner of Spanish top-flight club Real Valladolid, said the European country only resumed football last week after a significant fall in the number of new infections and fatalities.

“The championship restarted here when we had total security in cities and communities when the number of those having the virus had come right down,” the two-time World Cup winner said.

“So I think Brazil is still at a peak and thinking about having football back is a mistake,” the 43-year-old added.