Messi's Argentina lost 4-3 to France and hours later Ronaldo's Portugal went down 2-1 to Uruguay, leaving the tournament without its two best known and most loved players. "There is a tournament in September, the UEFA (Nations League) and we hope he will be with us to help the younger ones to grow", he told reporters.
The result sends the European team out of the World Cup, however many were taken aback by how little impact Ronaldo was able to have on the match.
Ronaldo does not have to shoulder the same burden. He has reached the knockout stages on each previous occasion: Euro 2012 quarter-finals & World Cup 2014 round of 16 with Greece; Euro 2016 winners and at least World Cup 2018 round of 16 with Portugal.
Uruguay, meanwhile, had not conceded a goal in 2018 - an impressive run of six games, three of them at Russian Federation 2018.
It means Ronaldo can go home knowing his status as a national hero is secure, so what happens next is all about his own ambition and insatiable appetite for creating records and raising his own bar.
In the final moments of the half, with Suarez down following a challenge from Raphael Guerreiro, Portugal won a corner that came to nothing before a half-chance was steered wide by Cavani at the far post.
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Edinson Cavani shatters Ronaldo's World Cup dream as Uruguay edge Portugal, 2-1.
Santos said his side had studied their opponents but that it was impossible to legislate for Uruguay's first goal, which featured a superb interaction between Luis Suarez and his strike partner Cavani. So, what are his targets?
Portugal's shrewd tactician Fernando Santos would not be too concerned about their draws against Spain and Iran en route to the Round of 16 as he is known to be happy with the tag of ugly ducklings.
To stop Ronaldo, Uruguayan central defensive partnership of Diego Godin and Jose Maria Gimenez, who is set to comeback after missing the third match due to a thigh injury, need to be at their best. At the very least, you can bet that Ronaldo will want to break the 100-goal barrier for his country.