Beginning of the 2016/17 season brought whispers and rumours of Cristiano Ronaldo’s demise as the Portuguese star kicked off campaign with a goal scoring tally well below his standards.
The European Championship winner plunged into the new season carrying a minor injury problem, but his critics jumped at the opportunity to exaggeratedly diminish Ronaldo and frustrate the Real Madrid star in his pursuit of perfection.
Self-aware player as he is, Cristiano Ronaldo went through a major transformation in his Real Madrid role over the course of last year.
As a man who works relentlessly on making himself better, Cristiano Ronaldo is trying his best to extend his career at top level. An absolute athlete known for his 5 a.m. ice baths with which he soothes his aching muscles is constantly looking for ways to improve his stats and in the end, be of greater benefit to his team.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s efforts to improve himself often can wrongfully perceived as arrogance as he might appear more worried about preserving his own image than his side’s, but the most recent results beg to differ, together with Ronaldo’s apparently changed attitude.
Alone Against the World
The Portuguese is a strong character and all the circumstances he was raised in could not have thought him to look at the world around him in different perspective. Going singlehandedly against the entire world might not be his chosen battle ground, but it is the one he thrives in.
“He has a strong personality because he is a young guy who got nothing for free in life. He comes from a poor family. His father had trouble with alcohol and died because of it. His brother had addiction problems as well. His life has been complicated.”, As journalist Tomas Roncero once argued.
Life taught Ronaldo to fight hard, but also to use anger to respond to unfair criticism. And if numbers are anything to go by for all of those who might have failed to watch him in action this season, he gave the strongest possible response.
Two goals against Juventus in the Champions League final are just reward for a clinical striker Cristiano Ronaldo has evolved in ever since being pushed further up the field. They also come as evidence of his contribution which has in most part come down to scoring goals – most of which are extremely important.
Statistical breakdown of Cristiano Ronaldo’s night in Cardiff is particularly eye-opening.
The Portuguese forward became the first player in history to score in three Champions League finals. Two key words here are Champions League, as this remarkable feat has been achieved before, but in a different format and different name of Europe’s elite club competition.
Ronaldo also scored Real Madrid’s 500th goal in the Champions League with his opener, whereas his second goal in the brace marked his 600th goal in all competitions for club and country.
Looking at his feats from a slightly wider perspective speaks volumes of his yearly influence and makes the aforementioned early-season critics well out of place.
A Perfect Circle
From the time he lifted the Champions League trophy in May 2016, Cristiano Ronaldo won the European Championship with Portugal picking up accolades for his leadership role within the national team.
UEFA Best player award came as a worthy reward in August 2016, whereas the Ballon d’Or prize in December is arguably the biggest recognition of his impressive year. Given the fact Ballon d’Or is not under FIFA’s umbrella anymore, Cristiano Ronaldo picked a double individual award as he got voted FIFA Best Player of the year.
Portugal voted Ronaldo Player of the year in his homeland back in March, whereas Cristiano Ronaldo’s 14 goals in nine end-of-season games make justice to his killer instinct which guided Real Madrid to La Liga crown.
Rounding off the full year of incredible achievements, the 32-year-old Portugal international closed the circle with the same prize he opened it – lifting another Champions League trophy high in the air.
Perfection chaser has seemingly achieved his pursuit, but do not think for a second he will settle for anything less than to preserve it as long as he can.
- Soccer News Like
- Be the first of your friends!