He's more functional — Ex-EURO winner Chiellini reveals missing piece in Portugal - And it's not Ronaldo

Giorgio Chiellini and Cristiano Ronaldo at Juventus | Imago

He's more functional — Ex-EURO winner Chiellini reveals missing piece in Portugal - And it's not Ronaldo

Izuchukwu Akawor • Izuchukwu Akawor • 11:34 - 29.06.2024

Ex-Juventus defender Giorgio Chiellini identifies the best player to complement Cristiano Ronaldo in the Portugal national team at the EURO 2024.

Former Juventus defender Giorgio Chiellini has identified the player who could best complement the ageing superstar Cristiano Ronaldo in the Portugal national team.

The Italian legend, who played alongside Ronaldo at Juventus, has pointed the finger at AC Milan's Rafael Leao, stating that the young forward's "poor movement" is causing problems for the legendary No. 7.

Chiellini on Ronaldo and Portugal

Leao, who has started two out of Portugal's three matches so far, has failed to register a single goal or assist, while the 39-year-old Ronaldo has starred in all three games with an assist to his name.

Chiellini, known for his defensive brilliance, has provided a unique perspective on the situation, suggesting that Diogo Jota of Liverpool would be a much more "functional" partner for Ronaldo.

Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo is yet to get off the mark at the EURO 2024. | Imago

"In my opinion, Ronaldo looks more useful for the Portuguese national team than Gonçalo Ramos," Chiellini said according to Sportskeeda.

"However, Leao is not the best partner for Cristiano. He makes unnecessary movements that take him out of the game. Jota is much more functional because he can change positions with Cristiano."

Chiellini with the 2022 Euros trophy | Imago

The former Juventus defender's words carry significant weight, given his vast experience and close working relationship with Ronaldo during their time together in Turin.

While Leao has struggled to make an impact, Jota has only managed two substitute appearances so far at the EURO, leading Chiellini to suggest that the Liverpool forward could be the missing piece in Portugal's attacking puzzle.

Rafael Leao Imago

With the quarterfinals on the horizon, Portugal manager Roberto Martinez will have a crucial decision to make regarding the composition of his attacking line-up.

Chiellini's insights could prove invaluable as the Iberian nation looks to navigate the latter stages of the tournament and secure a potential showdown with arch-rivals Spain.

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