Page last updated at 13:08 GMT, Thursday, 19 June 2008 14:08 UK

Football star gets mobile damages

Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo said he wanted to protect his professional reputation

Football star Cristiano Ronaldo has accepted undisclosed High Court damages after a newspaper claimed he used his mobile phone during a training session.

Solicitor Simon Smith told the court that the Sun article implied "wholly unprofessional and arrogant behaviour".

Mr Smith said the story wrongly claimed the Manchester United player had broken club rules and was fined 8,000.

The Portugal international winger has donated the damages to a charity on his home island of Madeira.

Mr Justice Eady heard that February's article alleged the player had taken his mobile telephone onto the training pitch and sent four text messages during a single training session.

'Never happened'

This caused his manager Sir Alex Ferguson to be "furious and to fine him a bumper 8,000", the article continued.

Mr Smith said: "The allegation was widely republished throughout the world.

I take training very seriously and do not want people to think I do not try my best in training
Cristiano Ronaldo

"Both the claimant and Sir Alex Ferguson have confirmed that the alleged incident never happened."

He said News Group Newspapers, which publishes the Sun, had made an "offer of amends" under the Defamation Act.

The footballer said in a statement after the hearing: "I felt it necessary to bring this action in order to protect my reputation as a professional footballer.

"Contrary to the impression the article gave, I take training very seriously and do not want people to think I do not try my best in training.

"I'm glad something good has come out of this and that a charity I care about will receive the damages."


SEE ALSO
Ronaldo 'yet to decide on future'
08 Jun 08 |  Portugal
Ronaldo wins writers' award again
02 May 08 |  Premier League
Ronaldo named player of the year
27 Apr 08 |  Football

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