Ronaldo misses game with Watford as a ‘precaution’

LECCO, Italy, Reuters

Ronaldo’s return to competitive action has been delayed after he missed Inter Milan’s 2-1 friendly win against English first division club Watford on Tuesday.

The Brazilian striker, who has been out with injury since April 2000, was due to take part in the game in the northern town of Lecco but suffered a slight muscle strain in training.

An Inter spokesman said the injury was not serious and Ronaldo had been left out as a “precaution”.

Ronaldo, who watched the match from the stands, has not played since he suffered major knee ligament damage in the 2000 Italian Cup final against Lazio.

The subsequent surgery and rehabilitation ruled him out of last season, although he was able to take part in a training match last week against amateur side Bormiese.

After a low key first half against Watford, Inter took the lead three minutes after the break when Stephane Dalmat set up Mohamed Kallon to blast home from the edge of the penalty area.

Sergio Conceicao made it 2-0 six minutes later with a low left-foot shot.

Micah Hyde netted a consolation on the hour after pouncing on a loose ball.