Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane has defended Cristiano Ronaldo after the five-time Ballon d'Or was the butt of jokes from fans around the world for using a mobile phone camera to check himself following a head injury during the weekend's win over Deportivo La Coruña.
He used the phone of a medic to look at himself, with many unscrupulous detractors quick to get on his back and hurl 'vanity' or 'arrogance' insults at the player for a cheap laugh.
But speaking in the wake of the injury, Zidane has clarified that Ronaldo was using the phone to see how bad the wound was as he wanted to continue playing. As it was, the 32-year-old was forced to leave the pitch and required stitches in the dressing room to close the gash.
"Cristiano grabbed the mobile to see if he could continue playing or not," Zidane is quoted as saying by Sport when the subject came up at his latest press conference.
"He wanted to know whether the cut was very deep or not. I am saying exactly what he told us in the dressing room after. I am not making anything up," the Frenchman continued.
I don't get what's wrong with Ronaldo checking a cut on his head. Can someone let me know, please.— Adam McKola (@AdamMcKola) January 21, 2018
Ronaldo, who has long been known for his extreme professional dedication, was back in training with the rest of the Real Madrid squad on Tuesday.
"They stitched it up and he was back in training. If he is training with us, with his eye like this [swollen] it shows how important it is for him to be on the pitch," Zidane said.