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Cristiano Ronaldo

Soccer Player

Born: 5 February 1985
Birthplace: Funchal, Madeira, Portugal
Best known as:

The world soccer player of the year in 2008

Speedy, flamboyant, and a deadly shot with either foot, Cristiano Ronaldo is one of soccer's most famous wingers. Ronaldo was a prodigy in Portuguese youth leagues and joined his boyhood team, Sporting Lisbon, in 2002 at age 17. A year later the club sold him to the leading English team Manchester United for a fee of 12 million pounds. Over the next six seasons with United, Ronaldo scored 118 goals in 292 games. He also gained a reputation for what The Manchester Guardian called a "monstrous ego" and "a certain petulance and willingness to fall over in search of free-kicks." He played for Portugal in Euro 2004 and 2008 and in World Cups in 2006 and 2010. In 2008 Ronaldo scored 42 goals for Manchester United and was named the FIFA World Player of the Year, which set the stage for his remarkable purchase by Real Madrid in June of 2009. The Spanish club paid a fee of 94 million Euro, or nearly 132 million US dollars, to acquire Ronaldo from Manchester.

Extra credit:

Ronaldo most often wears uniform number 7... He is no relation to Brazilian soccer star Ronaldo... In the 2006 World Cup quarterfinal, England's Wayne Rooney got a red card after Cristiano Ronaldo urged a referee to penalize him. Rooney and Ronaldo were professional teammates on Manchester United, and Ronaldo endured a storm of criticism in England after a camera caught him winking to teammates after the incident... George Best once said of Ronaldo, "There have been a few players described as the new George Best over the years, but this is the first time it's been a compliment to me"... His birthplace, Madeira, is an island about 600 miles from the Portuguese mainland; it's the namesake of Madeira wine... "His father, José Dinis, named him after his favourite actor Ronald Reagan, who was US president at the time," according to the Guardian.

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More on Cristiano Ronaldo from Infoplease:

  • Cristiano Ronaldo - Biography of Cristiano Ronaldo, The world soccer player of the year in 2008
  • Irina Shayk - Biography of Irina Shayk, Cover girl for the 2011 Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue
  • Ronaldo - Biography of Ronaldo, The Brazilian soccer star who was thrice FIFA's Player of the Year
  • Selected Biographies: R - Selected biographies of well-known people and fictional characters
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