Cristiano Ronaldo-Professional soccer player.
Born: 5 February 1985 (age 25)
Full name: Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro
Place Of Birth: Funchal, Madeira, Portugal
Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro was born on February 5, 1985 in Madeira, Portugal, a small island off the western coast of the country. Ronaldo, The youngest of Maria Dolores dos Santos and Jose Dinis Aveiro's four children, was named after Ronald Reagan, a favorite actor of his father's.
Ronaldo grew up in a largely working class neighborhood, his home a small tin roofed shack that overlooked the ocean. His early life was shaped by hardship; his father, a gardener, often drank too much, and eventually died from kidney problems in 2005. To help keep the children fed, and maintain some financial stability, Rolando's mother worked as a cook and cleaning person.
Ronaldo first began kicking a football when he was three, and when he started primary school at age six, his passion for the sport was obvious. His favourite boyhood team was SL Benfica even though he would later join their rival, Sporting CP. He first played for an amateur team, Andorinha, where his father was the kit man, when he was just eight years old. By 1995, at just ten years of age, Cristiano Ronaldo's reputation was growing in Portugal. Madeira's top two teams, CS Marítimo and CD Nacional were both interested in signing him. Marítimo, the bigger team, missed a crucial meeting with Rui Santos manager of Andorinha, and as a result Ronaldo signed for Nacional. After a title-winning campaign at Nacional, Ronaldo went on a three day trial with Sporting Lisbon who subsequently signed him for an undisclosed sum.
Ronaldo joined Sporting's other youth players who trained at the Alcochete, the club's "football factory," where he received first-class instruction. Sporting realised that Ronaldo needed more support and arranged for his mother to join him. He made his debut for Sporting Lisbon against Moreirense and scored 2 goals. He also featured for Portugal in the UEFA Under 17 Championships.
His performances at the UEFA Under 17 championship drew him to the attention of the wider football world. He was first spotted by former Liverpool F.C. manager Gérard Houllier at the age of 16. However, Liverpool later declined him because he was too young and needed some time to develop into a top footballer.
However he came to the attention of Sir Alex Ferguson in the summer of 2003, when Sporting Lisbon beat Manchester United 3–1 in the inauguration of the Alvalade XXI stadium in Lisbon. Ronaldo demonstrated his ability to play on both wings. After the match, United's players spoke enthusiastically of the young talent that they had just played against, saying they would rather have him in their team than play against him in the future.
Liverpool, under manager Gérard Houllier back then, was reported to have interest in signing Ronaldo. It was also revealed later that Arsenal was closed to signing him before his move to Manchester Utd in 2003.
Ronaldo’s signature came after Sporting defeated United 3–1 in a pre-season friendly. The United players spoke enthusiastically about the winger on their way home, and suggested manager Alex Ferguson to sign the player up, which he did for a price of £12.24 million.
Ronaldo made a memorable debut for United as a substitute against Bolton; his 30 minutes performances created hype with United fans and the English media with his dazzling dribbles. He scored his first goal for the club with a free kick in a 3–0 win over Portsmouth in November.
Despite promising starts, his first two seasons at the club received mixed reviews. He’s being praised for his technique and skill, but often criticised for lack of consistency and poor decision making on the field.
Ronaldo won both the PFA Player and Young Player of the Year Award in 2007; he’s also voted Footballer of the Year by the Football Writers’ Association; and was the top 3 finalists for both the FIFA World Player of the Year and European Player of the Year awards in 2007.
Ronaldo continued his fine form in the 2007/2008 season, netted in 42 goals in all competition (31 in Premier League), and was again voted as the PFA Player of The Year and Football Writers’ Footballer of the Year.
His performance contributed to United’s double for the season; winning the Premiership in succession as well as bringing home the UEFA Champions League trophy, in which he scored a goal in the final.
Ronaldo was crowned as both the FIFA World Player of the Year and European Player of the Year in 2008.
Ronaldo scored 26 goals in the 2008/09 season, helping United to another Premiership title, and again reached the final of the Champions League in which they lost to Barcelona.
Ronaldo became the world’s most expensive football player following his move from Manchester United to Real Madrid in July 2009 in a £80 million transfer. He was welcome by 80,000 fans in the Santiago Bernabéu stadium during his official presentation.
Ronaldo’s Real Madrid career started well and was in untouchable form until his injury in October. He recovered his form soon after and scored 33 goals in his first season for Real, but couldn’t help the club to win any trophies.
Ronaldo earned his first cap for Portugal in a 1–0 victory against Kazakhstan on 20 August 2003. He was called up for Euro 2004, scoring in a 2–1 group stage loss to eventual champions Greece and in a 2–1 semi-final win over the Netherlands. He was named in the team of the tournament despite finishing with only two goals. That same year, he also represented Portugal at the 2004 Summer Olympics.
2006 World Cup
Ronaldo was the second-highest scorer in FIFA World Cup qualification in the European zone with seven goals and scored his first World Cup goal against Iran with a penalty kick.
During a quarter-final match against England on 1 July 2006, Ronaldo's United teammate Wayne Rooney was sent off for stamping on Portugal defender Ricardo Carvalho.
2010 FIFA World Cup