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Portuguese ace Ronaldo motivated for new challenge in Italy

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Wednesday, July 18th, 2018

 

Cristiano Ronaldo. REUTERS/Phil Noble/File Photo

Portuguese football icon Cristiano Ronaldo is looking forward to starting afresh with Italian giants Juventus following his recent move from Spanish side Real Madrid, with the five-time world player of the year dismissing question marks about his age and stating he is motivated to get started.

The 33-year-old Ronaldo made the remarks in Turin on Monday at his first press conference since transferring to the reigning Italian champions for a fee of around 100 million euros.

Proudly showing off his new number 7 jersey, Ronaldo said he is relishing the prospect of helping the club affectionately known as “The Old Lady” as it bids to capture another Italian Serie A title.

“As I said before, the age is not important. I feel good, I feel motivated, [it’s] exciting. So I will try to do my best, like always. And I’m looking forward to start the league well and try to win every title,” said the forward.

The arrival of the Portuguese goalscoring machine has generated feverish excitement in the club’s home city of Turin, and experts also believe Ronaldo’s presence will help revive Italy’s football scene after the national team suffered the humiliation of failing to reach the recently-concluded FIFA World Cup in Russia.

“The transfer of a valuable footballer such as Ronaldo to an Italian club, against the backdrop of Italy having failed to qualify for the World Cup, a rare low point in the country’s history, is I think vital to the development of Italian football, even although he is a foreigner,” said Giovanni Timossi, a reporter with the Italian daily Corriere della Sera.

Prior to Monday’s press conference, many fans gathered to catch a glimpse of the attacking ace at Juventus’ Allianz Stadium. Many of the club’s followers believe that the superstar will exert a huge influence as Juventus push for more success.

“[He will] bring many wonderful victories. And he will help us become champions. I’m very sure of it,” said local fan Francesca.

Ronaldo’s football skills have also won him wide admiration from fans young and old, including a father and son visiting from Denmark.

“He’s everywhere also in Denmark. Every time whenever [he sees him play] he speaks about him, yeah,” said a Danish football fan called Asmos, commenting on his son’s love for the player.

The Turin-based club sold more than 520,000 “Ronaldo 7” shirts worth some 70 million euros in the 24 hours after the news was officially announced on July 10, as frenzied fans rushed out to buy their replica jerseys.

According to some industry insiders, the commercial revenue that the prolific goalscorer will bring to the club and to Italy’s Serie A league as a whole is immeasurable.

“Cristiano Ronaldo is a man that can play a key role in determining which club will be the winners of the UEFA Champions League. That’s his role on the field. In terms of economic returns, he is not only a football star but also a renowned celebrity,” said Paolo Biancone, a professor at the University of Turin’s Financial Management School. -Reuters

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Italy’s new government wins parliamentary backing, sparks mixed reactions

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Thursday, June 7th, 2018

Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte speaks during his first session at the Lower House of the Parliament in Rome, Italy, June 6, 2018.REUTERS/Tony Gentile

Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte comfortably won a confidence vote in the lower house of parliament on Wednesday (June 6), confirming his government’s majority after promising tough negotiations with Europe over the economy.

Conte, backed by the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement and the far-right League, won an initial vote in the Senate on Tuesday (June 5) and can now forge ahead with his coalition programme, which includes tax cuts, benefit hikes and justice reform.

Five-Star Movement’s member of parliament Stefano Buffagni said the new government has the majority needed to get Italy back on track while Alternativa Popolare’s member (Popular Alternative) and former Minister of Health Beatrice Lorenzin said that if the government’s very costly program will be applied Italy will be forced to leave euro.

A Roman couple, Fabrizio and Elia, expressed contrasting feelings. Fabrizio said he is confident that the new government is different from past ones and that it will work well while Elia said she is ”terrified” by it and does not trust its members.

Conte won the lower house motion by 350 votes to 236, with 35 parliamentarians abstaining. -Reuters

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“Last night was the darkest hour in Italy’s democracy” says 5-Star leader Di Maio

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Tuesday, May 29th, 2018

Anti-establishment 5-Star Movement leader Luigi Di Maio speaks at the media after a round of consultations with Italy’s newly appointed Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte at the Lower House in Rome, Italy, May 24, 2018. REUTERS/Tony Gentile

 

The leader of the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement, Luigi Di Maio said on Monday (May 28) the Italian President’s decision to reject the nomination of their economy minister amounted to the “darkest hour in Italy’s democracy.”

Di Maio’s video was posted on his Facebook website with the words “My vote counts” captioned over the later part of the message to his supporters.

He said it was “a shameful event in the republic’s history” that President Sergio Mattarella had given a mandate to a government, headed by Prime Minister-designate Carlo Cottarelli, as it had received no vote from citizens and was sure not to pass a confidence vote in the parliamentary chambers.

Di Maio called on his supporters to buy Italian flags and join demonstrations that would be organized over the coming days.

“Everyone needs to be together with our Italian flags to say that we are worth something and our vote is that which counts,” he said. — Reuters

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Real celebrate Champions League win at home stadium

by UNTV News   |   Posted on Monday, May 28th, 2018

Real Madrid’s Sergio Ramos lifts the trophy as they celebrate winning the Champions League against Liverpool at NSC Olympic Stadium in Kiev, Ukraine, May 26, 2018. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach

Real Madrid players celebrated on Sunday (May 27) their third consecutive Champions League with thousands of fans at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium.

Real Madrid supporters urged Cristiano Ronaldo to stay at the club during the celebration as he was given a hero’s welcome at the Bernabeu with fans chanting his name and singing “Cristiano please stay”.

Madrid’s all-time top scorer then gave an optimistic speech on the pitch, saying: “I’m very comfortable here. With these players it’s impossible not to win.”

Thousands of supporters turned out to greet Zinedine Zidane’s history-making side, who began their celebrations with a service at the Almudena cathedral before visiting the city chambers and later the city hall, addressing gathered fans in the Plaza del Sol.

Ronaldo had overshadowed Madrid’s 3-1 win over Liverpool in Saturday’s final in Kiev to lift a record-extending 13th European Cup by dropping a hint that he was about to leave the club in an interview moments after collecting the trophy, declaring “it was beautiful to be at Real Madrid”. — Reuters

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