In a bizarre turn of events, Portuguese football legend Cristiano Ronaldo was the subject of a viral death hoax that swept through social media, further highlighting the troubling trend of fake celebrity death announcements circulating online.
Rumors of Ronaldo’s supposed demise began to circulate on Friday, September 8, 2023, originating from a Facebook page named “R.I.P. Cristiano Ronaldo.” The page posted a cryptic message that sent shockwaves across the internet, claiming that the 38-year-old football icon had passed away. The post, which has now garnered over one million likes, read:
“At about 11 a.m. ET on Friday (September 08, 2023), our beloved footballer Cristiano Ronaldo passed away. Cristiano Ronaldo was born on February 5, 1985, in Funchal. He will be missed but not forgotten. Please show your sympathy and condolences by commenting on and liking this page.”
This tragic announcement prompted an outpouring of grief from Ronaldo’s fans on Facebook and various other social media platforms, including Twitter. Messages of sorrow and disbelief flooded these platforms as people mourned the alleged loss of the football superstar.
However, as the news rapidly spread, some began to doubt its authenticity. Critics pointed out that major Portuguese news networks had not reported Ronaldo’s death, suggesting that such a significant event would have been widely covered if it were true. This skepticism underlined the growing concern over fake viral death stories on social media.
Putting an end to the unsettling rumor, Ronaldo’s representatives released a statement on September 9 confirming that the football icon was very much alive and well. The statement, as reported by Media Mass, read:
“He joins the long list of celebrities who have been victimized by this hoax. He’s still alive and well, stop believing what you see on the Internet.”
Many fans were outraged by the fake news, labeling it as dangerous, distressing, and cruel to Ronaldo’s devoted admirers. Some argued that the incident highlighted his enduring global popularity.
The false news of Ronaldo’s alleged demise also deeply affected YouTuber IShowSpeed, who admitted to being in tears after hearing the fake reports. During a live stream, he implored his viewers to verify the news regarding the football legend’s status.
This isn’t the first time that Ronaldo has fallen victim to fake death rumors. In April 2023, a similar hoax circulated, claiming that the five-time FIFA Player of the Year had tragically died in a car accident, complete with images of a damaged vehicle.
Ronaldo now joins the ranks of celebrities who have been ensnared by this disturbing viral death hoax trend. Just last month, Spanish singer Jose Luis Perales also had to dispel rumors of his own fake death, emphatically stating that he was “more alive than ever.”