Ever since his surprise transfer away from Real Madrid this summer, Cristiano Ronaldo has continued to demonstrate his world class ability after a whirlwind start to his career at Juventus.
The Italian giants forked out £100m to obtain the services of Ronaldo, and the Portuguese superstar has not disappointed after a blistering start to life in Turin.
Even at the age of 33, Ronaldo has notched an impressive ten goals in 14 Serie A appearances to date. Making him the first player since the 1957/58 season to achieve that number of goals in as many appearances.
But what exactly is it that makes Ronaldo stand out above the rest?
Continued desire to improve
One of Ronaldo’s finest traits is his desire and passion to keep bettering himself. Even in his Manchester United days under Sir Alex Ferguson, the early signs were there for a player who originally appeared wet behind the ears to turn himself a global superstar.
CR7 learned much about the game under the stewardship of Ferguson and even after his time at Old Trafford was up, Madrid entertained a player who was at the height of his physical and mental powers.
Not only did Ronaldo score 311 goals in 292 La Liga games, the Madeira-born man fine-tuned other areas of his game so he could sustain his image as one of the world’s best ever players. Such attributes as his attitude, professionalism and work rate all fundamentally improved during his tenure at the Bernabeu.
Now at Juventus, it’s obvious that Ronaldo has an unprecedented desire to keep on improving, year after year.
The season so far
Ronaldo’s current goal record is no real surprise or shock, although it did take him four games to score for the Old Lady. Perhaps that’s the shock!
In the Champions League, his record isn’t as strong but he did notch a stunning goal against United in a 2-1 home loss in November. That’s his only goal in Europe so far but as the competition reaches the latter stages, expect that record to increase.
What does the future hold?
Ronaldo signed a four-year deal when he made the switch from Spain to Italy in the summer of 2018, and it’s likely that he’ll see out the full duration of the contract.
Barring injury, expect Ronaldo to torment defenders for seasons to come yet and who knows what records he can potentially break at the Allianz Stadium.
Already Real Madrid’s all-time goal scorer, it would take monumental effort to dislodge Alessandro Del Piero’s 290 goals in a Juve shirt but a record-breaking sixth Ballon d’Or is more realistic.
With that in mind, the Champions League winner odds place Juventus as third favourites at 6/1, but if Ronaldo continues going from strength to strength – and can help Massimiliano Allegri’s side to a third Champions League – it would take a brave man to bet against him winning a sixth Ballon d’Or for 2019.
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