Cristiano Ronaldo’s Euro Dream Ends in Dramatic Shootout Loss

Cristiano Ronaldo’s bid for the European Championship title in his final tournament appearance has come to an end. The 39-year-old announced that this, his record sixth appearance, would be his last at the continental championship.

The dramatic exit occurred early Saturday when Portugal was eliminated by France in a tense penalty shootout, with France emerging victorious, 5-3.

During the shootout, all of France’s players scored their penalties, but Portugal’s João Félix hit the post, missing his crucial shot.

Ronaldo disclosed to Portuguese public broadcaster RTP on Monday that he would not return for another European Championship.

“Without a doubt, this is my last European Championship. But I’m not emotional about that,” he stated.

“I’m moved by all that football represents — by my enthusiasm for the game, the joy of seeing my supporters, my family, and the affection people show for me,” Ronaldo said after Portugal’s defeat of Slovenia, which secured their place in the quarterfinals with a 3-0 win on penalties.

Ronaldo was instrumental in Portugal’s 2016 European Championship win, where they defeated France in the final.

After the decisive penalty shootout, Ronaldo, who had scored Portugal’s first penalty, was seen alone and visibly moved.

His longtime teammate, Pepe, was visibly distraught, crying into Ronaldo’s jersey. Ronaldo consoled him before they both made their way down the tunnel.

The result was a sigh of relief for France, especially after their key player, Kylian Mbappé, was substituted before the shootout due to a minor injury, despite playing the tournament with a protective face mask from an earlier injury.

France is set to face Spain in the semifinals following their extra-time victory over Germany in Stuttgart.