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Cristiano Ronaldo

Cristiano Ronaldo
Ronaldo playing for Real Madrid
Personal information
Full nameCristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro
Date of birth5 February 1985(age 31)
Place of birthFunchal, Madeira, Portugal
Height1.86 m
Playing positionWinger / Striker
Club information
Current clubReal Madrid
Number7

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Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro, OIH, (born 5 February 1985), commonly known as Cristiano Ronaldo, is a Portuguese footballer who plays as a winger or striker for Spanish La Liga club Real Madrid and is the captain of the Portuguese national team. Ronaldo became the most expensive player in football history after moving from Manchester United to Real Madrid in a transfer deal worth £80 million (-94m, US$132m). In addition, his contract with Real Madrid, in which he was to be paid £11 million per year over the following six years, made him the highest-paid football player in the world at the time, and his buyout clause was valued at -1 billion as per his contract.

Ronaldo began his career as a youth player for Andorinha, where he played for two years, then moved to Nacional. In 1997, he made a move to Portuguese giants Sporting Clube de Portugal. Ronaldo's precocious talent caught the attention of Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson and signed the 18-year-old for £12.24 million in 2003. The following season, Ronaldo won his first club honour, the FA Cup and played at Euro 2004 with Portugal. Ronaldo scored his first international goal in the opening game of the tournament against Greece, although Greece won 2 1. Portugal reached the final, which they again lost to Greece.

Ronaldo was the first player to win all four main PFA and FWA awards, doing so in 2007. In 2008, Ronaldo won the Champions League with United, was named best forward and player of the tournament and was the competition's top goalscorer as well as winning the European Golden Shoe, becoming the first winger to do so, and topping the Premier League Golden Boot award. He won three of the four main PFA and FWA trophies, only missing the PFA Young Player of the Year, and was named the FIFPro, World Soccer and Onze d'Or Footballer of the Year and the FIFA World Player of the Year, in addition to becoming Manchester United's first Ballon d'Or winner in 40 years. Ronaldo holds the distinction of being the first player to win the FIFA Puskás Award, an honour handed by FIFA to the best goal of the year. He scored that goal from 40 yards out against FC Porto in a UEFA Champions League quarter-final match, while playing for Manchester United. Three-time Ballon d'Or winner Johan Cruyff said in an interview on 2 April 2008, "Ronaldo is better than George Best and Denis Law, who were two brilliant and great players in the history of United."

On 15 May 2011, Ronaldo became the highest goalscorer in a season in the history of Real Madrid with 51 goals, surpassing the club's previous high of 49 by Ferenc Puskás. He would later finish the season with a total of 53 goals, making him the first Real Madrid player to ever reach and surpass 50 goals in a season. Six days later, Ronaldo broke the record of most goals ever scored in a season in La Liga with 40, surpassing Telmo Zarra's mark established in 1951 and Hugo Sanchez's mark matched in 1990. Ronaldo also broke Zarra's record of most goals per minute, with a goal scored every 70.7 minutes. The newspaper Marca, the official deliverer of the Pichichi Trophy (the top La Liga goalscorer award), claimed that Ronaldo scored 41 goals. By doing so, he won the European Golden Shoe award once again, becoming the first player to win the trophy in two different championships.


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