Real Madrid striker Cristiano Ronaldo accepted substantial libel damages from a British newspaper on Monday over a claim that he put his injured ankle at risk by “living it up” in a Hollywood nightclub.
Ronaldo was not at London’s High Court for the settlement of his action against Telegraph Media Group Ltd over a Daily Telegraph story in July 2008, when he played for Manchester United.
His lawyer Allan Dunlavy told judge Victoria Sharp that the report, which claimed the Portuguese player had laid down his crutches and taken to the dance floor with four models, caused him embarrassment, offence and distress.
As a professional, he was concerned both about his own reputation and how it might be perceived by United, the team’s manager Sir Alex Ferguson and the club’s fans, Dunlavy said.
The lawyer said the newspaper now accepted that the allegations were untrue, apologised, and had agreed to pay Ronaldo substantial damages and his legal costs in full. The amount of the damages was not disclosed.
The agreed statement settling the case was read out at the start of what had been expected to be a five-day hearing.