Cristiano Ronaldo wasn’t always destined for greatness. Born in São Pedro on the Portuguese island of Madeira in 1985, he was the youngest of four children. Already feeling the financial burden, his mother has since revealed that she initially wanted to abort him due to the family’s immense poverty and his father’s alcoholism. But, it wasn’t to be and after signing for Manchester United for £12.24 million before the 2003-04 season, Ronaldo became (at the time) the most expensive teenager in English football history.
Now, as he enters his mid-thirties, the Juventus striker has become the fourth oldest outfield player at Euro 2021 and, as of Tuesday 15th June has scored 106 goals in international football. With five
Ballon d’Or awards and four European Golden Shoes under his belt he is one of the most awarded players in football and remains an inspiration to sports fans across the globe.
Success pays, too; with earnings of £615 million from 2010 to 2019, he came second in Forbes’ list of the highest paid athletes of the decade, eclipsed only by Floyd Mayweather Jr. He is, however, the first footballer and only the third sportsman to ear over $1 billion in their career.
So how has he done it? And how does Ronaldo remain such an inspiration? Let’s take a look.
He's an athlete first and foremost
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