Welsh winger Louis Rees-Zammit says he did not mean to wind-up Portugal fans by copying Cristiano Ronaldo's celebration at the Rugby World Cup.
WHAT HAPPENED? The Wales national team star scored a try against Portugal on Saturday in the group stages of the 2023 Rugby World Cup in France and emulated Ronaldo's iconic 'Siuuu' celebration by jumping and turning in the air, before landing with his back to the crowd. Despite the seemingly light-hearted act, some mused on social media that this was 's***housery' towards the Portuguese, who ended up losing the game 28-8 in Nice. The 22-year-old has since said he meant no offence with the celebration, which he did after being dared by friends from his homeland.
WHAT THEY SAID: «A few of the boys back home, they are massive football fans,» Rees-Zammit told Sky Sports after the match. «We're all Man United fans and they said if you score against Portugal, you're probably not going to play them often, can you do the Ronaldo celebration? And I scored and I've done it.»
Asked how he thought the Portuguese fans took the celebration, Rees-Zammit replied: «I'm not sure. I heard a few 'SIUUUs' in the background, which is good, but it wasn't meant to be offensive or anything, you know? I absolutely love Ronaldo, he's my idol and I thought why not do his celebration?»
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Al-Nassr's Ronaldo is one of the most famous people in the world and many people across all sports and walks of life lap up any opportunity to do the 'Siuuu' celebration. The 38-year-old has enjoyed a glittering career and currently holds the all-time men's record for the most goals in international football, having scored 123 in 201 games for Portugal.
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WHAT NEXT? Wales are back in World CupRead on goal.com