Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo will be celebrating his 33rd birthday today and yet another year of football brilliance. The man who has achieved it all with two of the greatest clubs in the world has been sluggish in the ongoing season but it’s about time that Ronaldo will hit back stronger. Ronaldo has won two La Liga and three Champions League titles with the Los Blancos so far and still goes unaffected in his business.
Remarkable goals, amazing skills, the flair to beat defenders on will and undaunted strength is what makes Cristiano Ronaldo, one of the greatest to have graced the game of football. A young Ronaldo would never have made it big when he was lying in a hospital bed, 14 years of age diagnosed with racing heart but he rose back to do the unthinkable. He grew through the ranks of Portuguese club Sporting CP before eventually signing for Manchester United where he truly announced himself to the world. Ronaldo, has proved his mettle in two of the toughest leagues in the world. His attacking and poaching prowess might not be the same anymore but even an injured Cristiano Ronaldo can be incredibly effective on his day.
After 6 stellar seasons at Manchester United under his ‘football father’ Sir Alex Ferguson, Ronaldo signed for Real Madrid becoming the most expensive player of the time. The Portuguese ace who had already shown the world his capabilities at United added more astounding stats to his resume in the Spanish capital where he continues to be a terror for the best of defenders across the world. Real Madrid paid an astronomical £80 million for his services to convince Sir Alex Ferguson to let go of his best-kept possession.
From just one of his six seasons at United, Ronaldo took his Ballon d’Or tally to a record five at Real Madrid in nine years. In the process, he also went on to lift several other accolades with the Los Blancos while spearheading their attack. From silencing the Camp Nou crowd to scoring a number of winners, Ronaldo has done everything that was expected out of him. He not only outnumbered his eternal rival Lionel Messi in many seasons but also went on to prove his dominance as the best of all time.
Here are five best Cristiano Ronaldo moments in a Real Madrid shirt:
Silencing the Camp Nou
Barcelona and Real Madrid went into the game locked into a close tussle that will eventually decide the La Liga winners of the 2011-2012 season. The El-Clasico this time around was not just a mere rivalry and about bragging rights but also the ultimate title was on the line. The Los Blancos had not graced the winner medal since 2008 and manager Jose Mourinho was having one of his best seasons with the club. Sami Khedira put his side ahead capitalising on a horrendous mistake by Carles Puyol but Alexis Sanchez levelled the score after coming in as a substitute. Ronaldo stepped up finally and fetched a curling effort from Ozil on the right to smash it past Victor Valdes who had no response to the shot. The celebration which followed went on to become the hallmark of Real Madrid’s comeback in the competition. The noisy Camp Nou went silent as if Ronaldo was trying to tell them ‘keep calm I am still here.’
First La Liga medal
Cristiano Ronaldo was the true driving force behind ending Real Madrid’s title drought in the La Liga in 2011-12 season. The Portuguese superstar who was eager to win his first league medal with the Los Blancos struck a brilliant 46 goals in 38 times. It was one of his best seasons in a Real Madrid shirt as he became a force to reckon with across Europe, helping his side leave behind fierce rivals Barcelona. Ronaldo scored in 4-1 rout of Mallorca to become the only player to have scored against all La Liga sides. After three years of wait, Ronaldo had finally got his first championship medal. The memories of the wonderful night would still be fresh in the minds of Real faithful.
First Champions League triumph
A draining Champions League final encounter between Real Madrid and neighbours Atletico went into extra time with Real dominating the proceedings in the final 20 minutes in 2013-14. Juanfran opened the scoring in the 34th minute to put Atletico ahead in the clash. The second half saw Real bounce back and press hard for the equaliser but it wasn’t until in the third minute of stoppage time that Sergio Ramos put a scintillating header past Thibaut Courtois. Goals from Bale, Marcelo and Ronaldo in the extra time saw Real completely floor Atletico to lift the ultimate title. Ronaldo’s first Champions League medal was special for the man who went on to win two more in 2016 and 2017.
Supercopa de Espana final
Barcelona had kept the intensity and held Real Madrid strongly on a 1-1 draw for the majority of the game until the arrival of substitute Cristiano Ronaldo. The Portuguese ace beat Gerard Pique floored him and curl it from outside the box to put in the right top corner to give Madrid an advantage Barcelona fans a nightmare sight. The picture of a seemingly helpless Pique looking at the menace who just destroyed him to see off Barcelona is certainly one of the best moments from Ronaldo’s glorious career at Real Madrid. Real went on to win the two legs 5-1.
Fifth Ballon d’Or
Cristiano Ronaldo won his latest record fifth Ballon d’Or to equal Lionel Messi’s record in 2017. After a stellar campaign with Real Madrid which saw the Los Blancos dominate the season throughout, winning the La Liga, Champions League, Super Cup and the Club World Cup. Ronaldo scored 42 times in 46 times and was prolific across competitions. Adjudging his contributions towards Madrid’s triumph, he was honoured with the 5th Ballon d’Or which brought him on levels with Lionel Messi.