Ronaldo armband auctioned to help Serbian baby
BELGRADE, Serbia (AP):
The captain's armband that Cristiano Ronaldo angrily threw to the ground during Portugal's FIFA World Cup qualifier in Belgrade last week has been sold to an unidentified bidder for €64,000 (just over J$11 million) at a charity auction, Serbian state TV reported on Friday.
A Serbian humanitarian group put the blue armband up for online bidding to raise money for medical treatment for a six-month-old boy suffering with spinal muscular atrophy.
The three-day auction didn't pass without controversy as some participants tried to disrupt the process by putting up unrealistically huge sums. The fake bidding triggered public outrage with authorities pledging to find and punish the culprits.
Moments before last Saturday's match with Serbia ended in a 2-2 draw, Ronaldo walked off the field after his injury-time goal was disallowed. He dinked the ball over the Serbia goalkeeper and it looked as if it crossed the line before being cleared by a defender.
While heading to the dressing room before the final whistle, Ronaldo angrily threw down his armband near the touchline. After the match, it was picked up by a firefighter on duty and given to the charity group.
Ronaldo was criticised for his actions and some believe his angry display could lead to FIFA sanctions.