Cristiano Ronaldo picks Andre Silva as Portugal heir

Real Madrid attacker Cristiano Ronaldo has backed Andre Silva to take the goalscoring burden once he decides to hang up his boot for the Portugal national team.

The 21-year-old is due to switch clubs this summer after Porto agreed on a €38m package with AC Milan for the services. Ronaldo has been the leader of the attack for Portugal over the past few years with the nation lacking world-class quality in the striking department.

However, this burden has been sized down in recent months with Silva, a regular in the Primeira Liga having impressed with his opportunities for Portugal. The striker has already racked seven goals in eight caps for his nation, and Ronaldo believes that Portugal will be in good hands once he calls time on his international career. The World Cup next year is likely to be a pivotal point for the Champions League winner, who is now preparing for the Confederations Cup scheduled in Russia later this month.

Speaking to La Gazzettadello Sport, Ronaldo left special praise for Silva, who he believes has the qualities to excel as the highest level of football, he said: "When I retire, Portugal will be in good hands because they have already found a great striker: Andre Silva."

Silva was later on asked what he felt about Ronaldo’s comments, and he told Milan News: "I am calm."I have a lot of work to do before I can express certain thoughts. No [I have not spoken to Ronaldo about the move]. I want to work hard to get closer to the words he has afforded me." The young marksman will be recognised as a Rossoneri player when he returns to play for Portugal at the Confederations Cup, where they take on Mexico in the opener.Ronaldo is on target to win the fifth Ballon d’Or award.