From being told that football would never get him anything to eat to becoming the first footballer ever to be a billionaire, Cristiano’s journey proves that through hard work, dedication and determination, one is capable enough to reach the zenith of his career and achieve the unaccomplished feats.
Cristiano Ronaldo, popularly known by the name of CR7 or Cristiano once again stole the headlines of many newspapers and television shows when Forbes declared him to be a billionaire becoming the first footballer to enter the club. Recently, the Portuguese star also became the first person to reach 200 million followers on Instagram. His arch-rival and football legend Lionel Messi stays way behind when it comes to popularity on social media platforms. It is his physical fitness and body physique which inspires not only football fans but people from different spheres to stay fit and healthy and thus making them his fans.
“Cristiano is undoubtedly the best of his generation and has been an inspiration to the upcoming generations,” said Matthijs De Ligt, the new Juventus centre back. The young and shining stars who are earning names in football now not only idolize him but have been giving significant time to physical training and practice because of the benchmark that he has set, be it Mbappe, Haaland, De Ligt or Vinicius Jr. The 35-year-old became the third athlete after Floyd Mayweather and Tiger Woods to feature in the royal list. What is really astonishing here is the fact that at an age when most footballers are close to retirement or often choose to play in less competitive football leagues, Ronaldo is still leading the Juventus attack in the Italian Football League having scored 22 goals in 21 games in Serie-A and 36 goals in the 2019-2020 football season so far.
Ronaldo first came into light when he joined the English club Manchester United in 2003. It was Sir Alex Ferguson, the manager of Manchester United who saw the potential in the young kid and gave him an ample amount of opportunities. He won 3 premier league titles, 1 UCL and his first Ballon d’Or here. In 2009, when Barcelona defeated Manchester United in the final of the UCL, Cristiano left United and moved to the Spanish giants Real Madrid. It was Madrid where he actually gained fame and the world was able to witness the Messi-Ronaldo rivalry for a long time. Here, he came to be known as the ‘King of UCL’ when he not only led Real Madrid to 4 UCL titles, being the highest goal scorer in all of them but also earned the title of the ‘Comeback King’ as he was able to score when all failed and led Real to victories even when they were 0-2 down in the knockout stages. It was he who was able to breach the fortress of defense and made many great goalkeepers like Neuer, Buffon and Oblak his bunny, all in 1 UCL. Madrid became the club where he equalized Messi by winning his 5th Ballon d’Or in 2017 only to lag behind again when Messi won his 6th in 2019.
It was his captaincy which also brought him worldwide fame as he led his national team Portugal to win the 2016 Euro Cup and the 2019 Nations League Cup. It was the first time that Portugal ever won an international trophy and that came under Cristiano. Starting as a boy with a small home who lost his father and was forced to work in childhood to becoming a billionaire today just because of his hard work and passion, Cristiano’s journey is a testimony which proves that if one is resolute and diligent, there is nothing which can stop him. Where there is a will, there is a way. The journey just demands struggle. “If you believe in something and have the right people with you, nothing can stop you except your own laziness.” said the greatest footballer of all time after receiving his 5th Ballon d’Or.
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