Cristiano Ronaldo said he felt “embarrassed” after being accused of rape.
Kathryn Mayorga claimed Ronaldo raped her in a hotel room in Las Vegas 10 years ago, with German publication Der Spiegel reporting the story last October.
Ronaldo repeatedly denied the accusation and the Clark County District Attorney’s Office announced in July that the Juventus striker would not face charges as they could not “be proven beyond a reasonable doubt”.
According to Der Spiegel, Mayorga first made a complaint of sexual assault in 2009 and subsequently reached an out-of-court settlement with Ronaldo. It was claimed by the magazine she was paid $375,000 as part of a privacy agreement, preventing her from going public with the allegations.
The Portuguese, speaking to Piers Morgan in an interview to be aired on ITV on Tuesday, has spoken for the first time about the impact the case has had on his family life.
“They play with your dignity. It’s hard,” said Ronaldo.
“You have a girlfriend, you have a family, you have kids. When they play with your honesty, it’s bad, it’s hard.
“I remember one day I was at home in the living room with my girlfriend watching the television, to see the news and they talk about Cristiano Ronaldo and this and that, I listened to my kids coming down the stairs and I changed the channel because I was embarrassed.
“I felt embarrassed, I just changed the channel for Cristiano Jr not to see that they speak badly about his father, about a very bad case. It makes me feel so bad, to be honest.”
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