Manchester, October 23: Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo says he is confident of clearing his name amid a rape allegation.
American Kathryn Mayorga has accused Ronaldo of sexually assaulting her in a hotel in Las Vegas in 2009, something the Portuguese has strenuously refuted.
German publication Der Spiegel first reported the claims, which also included the suggestion Ronaldo paid Ms Mayorga $375,000 in 2010 as part of a privacy agreement, preventing her from going public with the allegations. Ms Mayorga filed a lawsuit in an attempt to quash that agreement while Las Vegas police have re-opened an investigation.
Ronaldo's lawyer Peter Christiansen confirmed the payment was made to Ms Mayorga, but said some documents presented as evidence had been "stolen" and "completely fabricated".
In a statement released earlier this month, Ronaldo described rape as an "abominable crime" and on Monday (October 22) addressed the issue for the first time in front of the media since the allegations were made.
I firmly deny the accusations being issued against me. Rape is an abominable crime that goes against everything that I am and believe in. Keen as I may be to clear my name, I refuse to feed the media spectacle created by people seeking to promote themselves at my expense.— Cristiano Ronaldo (@Cristiano) October 3, 2018
My clear conscious will thereby allow me to await with tranquillity the results of any and all investigations.— Cristiano Ronaldo (@Cristiano) October 3, 2018
"I am a happy man," he told reporters. "We did the statement two weeks ago, if I'm not wrong. I am glad, of course, I'm not going to lie in this situation, I'm very happy.
"My lawyers, they are confident and of course I am, too. The most important thing is I enjoy the football, I enjoy my life.
"The rest, I have people who take care of my life. Of course, the truth is always coming in the first position. So, I'm good."
Ronaldo accepts he is a role model due to his high profile, having won five Ballons d'Or in a glittering career, and he says he is focusing on his football.
"I know I am an example, 100 per cent, on the pitch and outside the pitch," Ronaldo said.
"I always smile. I'm blessed. I play at a fantastic club, I have a fantastic family, I have four kids, I'm healthy. I have everything.
"The rest does not affect me."
Ronaldo returns to former club Manchester United in the Champions League on Tuesday (October 23).