Undoubtedly, football and Madeira are synonymous with Cristiano Ronaldo, who unquestionably has to be one of the greatest players of all time.
Born on 5th February 1985, Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro (Ronaldo, after his father’s admiration for former U.S. President Ronald Reagan) initially played for several youth teams including C.F Andorinha and Clube Desportivo Nacional before joining the youth team of Sporting Clube de Portugal. He made his initial debut for their first team in 2002, later appearing in the national squad against Kazakhstan in 2003. Since then he has played for Portugal on over a 100 occasions and was captain of Portugal’s national 2016 European Cup winning team.
At 6 feet 1 inch, his presence on and off the pitch is said to be mesmerising hence his signing to Manchester United in 2003 and his record sale to Spain’s Real Madrid in 2009 for £80 million pounds. His transfer to the Italian club, Juventus on 10th July 2018, for €117million is seen to be a dream come true as he admitted during an interview that ‘ever since he was little, he had wanted to play for Juventus, a team always had a special affection for and whose fans had always supported him.’
His prowess as a sportsman has led to numerous achievements’ including 5 Golden Ball awards, 2017/18 Top Scorer and Champions League Winner, UEFA Supercup winner and he was recently nominated for the 2017/18 ‘Best Forward’ in the Champions League Award alongside Messi and Salah. He is the third person to have been ever awarded a lifetime contract with Nike and his CR7 merchandise and hotels, both in Madeira and Lisbon go from strength to strength.
No stranger to humanitarian works, Ronaldo has been the key figure in the recent Blood donor campaign in Madeira and is a donor himself. His regularly donates to charities including the Red Cross, Save the Children, UNICEF, World Vision and has auctioned off some of his trophies to raise funds for Make-a-Wish Foundation as well as donating to disaster relief and helping and spending time with his younger fans.