Cristiano Ronaldo was born and raised in a working class neighborhood on the Portuguese island of Madeira. He officially began playing football in 2003 for Clube Futebol Andorinha de Santo Antonio. By the age of ten, the islands more prominent teams began expressing interest in the phenom. Ronaldo joined Nacional da Ilha da Madeira, where he continued his meteoric rise and one year later was on the move to Lisbon, where he signed for Sporting in 2001. He is still the only player in club history to be promoted by four academy teams until debuting with the first team in one season. Ronaldo scored a brace in his first match against Deportivo Moreirense and went on to win the Superliga that same year as a mainstay One season later he made his European debut in a Champions League qualifier against Inter.
The turning point of his career was a brilliant performance during a friendly against Manchester United in 2001. Ferguson later admitted that his players couldn’t stop talking about Ronaldo. Even on the flight back to England, players of the likes of Roy Keane and Van Nistelrooy insisted that the manager sign Cristiano. The official announcement was made one week later after ManU paid £12.24 million for his services; a record transfer fee for an adolescent.
Cristiano Ronaldo perfected his skills in the following years and also managed to stand out for his intelligence and great physique. He would go on to win the Ballon d’Or, the Golden Boot, the FIFA World Player award, the FIFPro award, the UEFA Club Forward of the Year distinction, and became the top-scorer of the Champions League.
The Madridista forward made his international debut on 20 August 2003 against Kazakhstan and has since become the captain of Portugal, who he led into action in the 2010 World Cup.
- Place of Birth: Madeira, Portugal
- Date of Birth: 02/05/1985
- Position: Forward
- Weight: 84.5 kg
- Height: 186.5 cm
- Nationality: Portuguese
- Super League: 2002
- FA Cup: 2004
- Football League Cup: 2006, 2009
- Premier League: 2007, 2008, 2009
- Community Shield: 2007, 2008
- UEFA Champions League: 2008
- FIFA Club World Cup: 2008
- Copa del Rey (Spanish Cup): 2010/11
- La Liga (Spanish League): 2011/12
- Spanish Super Cup: 2012
- Bravo Trophy: 2004
- FIFPro Special Young Player of the Year: 2005, 2006
- Portuguese Footballer of the Year: 2006, 2007
- FA Premier League Player of the Year 2007
- Ballon d'Or runner-up: 2007
- FIFA World Player, third place: 2007
- UEFA Champions League Top-Scorer: 2008
- Golden Boot: 2008, 2011
- UEFA Club Footballer of the Year: 2008
- UEFA Club Forward of the Year: 2008
- FIFPro World Player of the Year: 2008
- Ballon d'Or (Golden Ball): 2008
- FIFA World Player 2008