Ever since Cristiano Ronaldo left Real Madrid, the team has mightily struggled to go back to their old dominant self, while CR7 continues to thrive at Juventus by securing yet another domestic title with La Vecchia Signora.

The Portuguese forward was one of the world’s most prolific goal-scorers during his time at Santiago Bernabeu and led the team to four UEFA Champions League and two La Liga trophies while scoring 450 goals on 438 appearances for Los Blancos.

And now that the team is suffering without their historic striker up front, Florentino Perez had nothing but praise for the best signing he’s ever done during an interview with Spanish show Onda Cero:

“Cristiano was an exemplary professional who never caused problems. He’s the greatest player I ever signed and my relationship with him was always excellent, both as a player and a man. We didn’t have any problems regarding money. There were rumors about him wanting to leave because of the tax case, but that’s not the reality of the situation. He wanted a change and to improve his contract, so he found it at Juventus and everyone was happy,” Perez told the media.

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Very happy to win the second trophy for @juventus and my first Serie A championship!🏆 #finoallafine

Una publicación compartida de Cristiano Ronaldo (@cristiano) el

Los Blancos tried to find a suitable replacement for Cristiano without offloading a significant sum of money, something that was clearly a major mistake by Perez and the rest of Real Madrid officials. At least, he refused to put the blame on his players for the team’s subpar season:

“It’s hard to find a replacement for someone like Cristiano, but we had good players anyway, such as Gareth Bale, Marco Asensio, Vinicius. I don’t think that was the problem this season,” he concluded.

Now, Gareth Bale will most likely leave the team in the summer, and Eden Hazard is set to join the team to try and become Cristiano’s replacement, with Christian Eriksen and Paul Pogba also as their top targets for the summer.