Portugal football captain Cristiano Ronaldo is a bundle of energy both on and off the field yet he didn't celebrate his two goals against Granada on Sunday, which helped Real Madrid register their first La Liga win of the season. He looked unhappy and he said he was sad.
But why this dissatisfaction? His £80 million transfer from Manchester United to Real Madrid in 2009 is the highest fee in football history. His performance for the club has been good so far and manager Jose Mourinho seems to be fond of him. This has led to speculation that his recent bizarre behaviour might have been just a publicity stunt to snag a bigger deal.
"I'm sad because of a professional issue and Real Madrid know why. That's why I didn't celebrate the goals, because I'm not happy. The people at the club know why. I cannot say any more," ESPN quoted him as saying when asked why he didn't celebrate his two goals against Granada.
There were speculations that he was not happy after Andres Iniesta of Barcelona won UEFA Best Player of the year award. Ronaldo said his displeasure on the field has nothing to do with it.
Ronaldo fans are surprised by his revelation and his teammate Gonzalo Higuain is equally surprised.
"I see him as being fine. He scored two goals so I believe that he is happy. My team-mates and I all see him well," The Sun quoted Higuain as saying.
However, Ronaldo's agent Jorge Mendes revealed that he was aware of the issue well before the public revelation.
"Ronaldo's comments are based on things I am aware of and he is at liberty to divulge them if he chooses. These comments have not surprised me and certainly not upset me. Those who know the relationship I have with Ronaldo know that he can always count on my solidarity," The Telegraph quoted him as saying.
This meant that Ronaldo was indeed having a problem with Real Madrid for a while and that his behaviour was not some sudden outburst.
And now, what's the real problem?
Going by his "I'm sad because of a professional issue" comment, he is either not getting along well with some of his teammates or that he is not happy with his pay.
Various sections of the media have reported that he is not on talking terms with teammate Marcelo after he supported Iker Casillas for the Ballon d'Or.
Another speculation doing the rounds is that the Real Madrid star feels he deserves more. It is reported that he is demanding a new contract - a take-home pay of £12 million a year, which would cost £25 million a year (including tax) for Real Madrid.
Ronaldo's yearly pay under the present contract is £10 million and take-home after tax deduction is a little more than £7 million.
But why did he take his disappointment to the field instead of sorting it out? Is he resorting to cheap publicity to force the club to pay him more or is he trying to send a message to rich clubs that he is ready to leave Real Madrid for more pay? Only Ronaldo can answer this. However, one might be reminded that money indeed matters!