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Ronaldo Biography

Mon 29 March 2021 | 8:30

Join us and learn about the phenomenon who became one of the greatest footballers of all time in this Ronaldo biography.

One could easily run out of superlatives when describing the immensely talented Ronaldo. What could really be said about Ronaldo that hasn’t been said before. Not only he raised the bar for what was considered to be world class but he also changed the way players looked at and approached the role of a striker. He did all this in a career riddled with injuries, which makes one think what heights Ronaldo would’ve climbed to, if his career was relatively injury free.

O Fenomeno, who at 17 years of old was already a World Cup winner, started his career at Cruzeiro and soon became the youngest ever player to receive the FIFA Player of the Year award as well as the youngest to win the Ballon d’Or. He would go on to win the FIFA accolade 2 more times and Ballon d’Or a second time. Ronaldo played for PSV, Barcelona, Inter and Real Madrid during the height of his career winning several trophies. Spells at AC Milan and Corinthians came near the end of his career before he retired from football in 2011. Now with the brief introduction out of the way, Let’s take an extensive look at

Ronaldo biography

to see how his journey as a footballer went.

Ronaldo Biography

In this brief Ronaldo bio, we take a closer look at one of the greatest football players of all time and how he went on to achieve that recognition by starting his football from the streets of Rio de Janeiro and reaching the very heights of European football with teams like Barcelona, Real Madrid and Inter Milan and of course reaching the World Cup final 3 times: 

Ronaldo Information

So let’s start Ronaldo bio with a general information about his physical attributes and his position on the pitch:

Ronaldo Bio

  • Full Name: Ronaldo Luís Nazário de Lima

  • Nickname: O Fenomeno, The Martian, R9

  • Profession: Former footballer and current owner of the Real Valladolid

Ronaldo Physical Stats

  • Height: 1.83 m (6 ft 0 in)

  • Eye Color: Brown

  • Hair Color: Black

  • Weight: 82 kg   

Ronaldo Football Information

  • Positon: Striker

  • Professional Debut: 25 May 1993

  • Jersey Number: 9

Ronaldo Date of Birth and Personal Info

  • Date of Birth: 18 September 1976

  • Birth Place: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

  • Nationality: Brazilian

Ronaldo Early Life

Born in a suburb of Rio de Janeiro, Ronaldo is one of Nelio and Sonia’s three children.

Ronaldo date of birth

is 18 September 1976. By all accounts, Ronaldo never seemed to be far from a football in his life, learning his tricks on the streets of Rio de Janeiro’s suburbs.

When he was 11, his parents separated and

Ronaldo childhood

would change because of it as soon after he dropped out of school to pursue his passion, football. Meanwhile, Ronaldo started playing futsal in the local clubs and to this day credits much of his skills to futsal.

It wasn’t long after that scouts started taking notice of the youngster, but it was Brazil’s former player Jairzinho who recommended Ronaldo to his old club Cruzeiro and

Cruzeiro

didn’t hesitate in signing the young prodigy.

Related Article: 

Best Young Strikers of 2020

Ronaldo Profile

We will take a look at Ronaldo’s career as a footballer in the different teams that he played throughout his career in this section of Ronaldo biography and that all starts with his time at Cruzeiro:

Football Career

First let’s take a look at Ronaldo’s club career as well as his time with the Brazil national team:

Curzeiro

 

Originally signed as a youth player, Ronaldo would soon prove to be well above his age group in terms of quality, so he was promoted to the first team, making his debut in 25 May 1993 against Caldense as a 16-year-old.

Ronaldo then went on to take the Brazilian Serie A by storm, scoring nearly a goal every match. A particular game against Bahia in his first season had him scoring 5 goals in a 5-0 victory. His goals helped Cruzeiro win the Copa do Brasil and a state league and subsequently earned him a place in Brazil’s 1994 World Cup Squad.

Related Article:

Romario Biography

PSV Eindhoven

 

The next chapter in

Ronaldo life story

would come in the Dutch

Eredivise

, where he would follow in Romario’s footsteps and move to

PSV Eindhoven

. The move came after Ronaldo had just won the World Cup with Brazil as a 17-year-old. So the expectations were high from the youngster and Ronaldo more than delivered.

It seemed that there was no stopping the young Ronaldo, whether it was in Brazil or Europe, defenders would find themselves baffled by Ronaldo’s technique, speed and his absolute genius in front of the goal.

Ronaldo would once again scoring nearly a goal every match, ending his PSV career by scoring 54 goals in 57 matches and helping PSV win the KNVB Cup in the 1995-96 season.

Barcelona

 

After PSV came the big move that everybody back in Brazil were waiting for Ronaldo to make and so Ronaldo decided to join the Spanish giants

Barcelona

in the summer of 1996, once again following in Romario’s footsteps, in what was a world record transfer fee at the time, with Barcelona paying $19.5 million to PSV.

What Ronaldo did at Barcelona in the 1996-97 season in terms of goal scoring and sheer amount of talent would not be repeated until the days of Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.

 

O Fenomeno won the FIFA Player of the Year in 1996 and went on to score 47 goals in 49 games for the Catalan side, helping them win a

Copa del Rey

and a UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup.

Inter Milan

 

Ronaldo was unsatisfied with his salary at Barcelona and

Internazionale

’s legend Sandro Mazzola, who was Inter’s sporting director at the time, knew this. So he saw his chance and offered Ronaldo a deal which he accepted. And so for the first time since Diego Maradona, a player broke the world transfer record for a second time, as Ronaldo became a Internazionale player in a transfer deal worth $27 million.

His debut season at Inter was great, as he scored 34 goals in his debut season, winning the FIFA Player of the Year for a second consecutive season as well as winning the Ballon d’Or for the first time, becoming the youngest player ever to win the award. He also helped Inter to a UEFA Cup.

But soon tragedy would befall him in his third season with Inter, in a game against Lecce in November of 1999, Ronaldo fell to the ground grabbing his knees and was brought out on a stretcher, having ruptured a tendon in his knee. On his return in April 2000, he once again fell to the ground after only 6 minutes, with his knee cap completely exploding according to his physiotherapist!

Ronaldo would lose the entire 2000-01 season as well as a big chunk of both seasons that came before and after him but his performances in the 2001-02 season were solid enough to earn him a place in Brazil’s 2002 World Cup squad.

Real Madrid

 

In what is one of the most inspiring recoveries in the history of sports, Ronaldo overcame the horrendous injuries that plagued 3 years of his career and came back to football. Ronaldo tore teams in the 2002 World Cup, scoring 8 goals and leading Brazil to a historic 5th World Cup trophy. That earned him another Ballon d’Or and FIFA World Player of the Year in 2002 and a move back to La Liga and

Real Madrid

.

As part of Florentino Perez’ Galactico project, that saw a global star arrive at Real Madrid each summer, Real Madrid acquired Ronaldo’s services from Inter in a $55.4 million deal. Ronaldo soon delivered, scoring twice on his debut, and he went on to score 30 goals in all competitions, helping Real Madrid win the La Liga, which would be his only trophy of import with Los Blancos.

Another 31 goals followed in the season after where he won the Pichichi award for the La Liga’s best goal scorer a second time. Ronaldo would score 24 goals in the 2004-05 season but in his final two season from his 5 season spell at Real Madrid, he began falling out of favor with the manager Fabio Capello, mainly because of his injuries and weight problem. Although he scored a total of 19 goals in his last one and a half seasons with Real Madrid, it was now time to move one.

AC Milan/Corinthians

 

On January of 2007, Ronaldo agreed to join

AC Milan

in a $9.6 million deal in the hopes of helping the Milan club come out of the shadow of their city rivals Inter Milan. Ronaldo became one of several players to play for both Milan clubs and to score in the Milan Derby for both teams. He ended his first 6 months at Milan with 7 goals.

But in his first full season with Milan, Ronaldo suffered a season ending injury against Livorno, which would be his last ever match for Milan. The Martian would make his return to football though, this time in a Corinthians shirt.

His first season with Corinthians was successful as he seemed to be back in form, scoring 23 goals in 35 matches and helping the club win the state league and Copa do Brasil. A second season with some injuries followed but it was at the start of third season that Ronaldo finally announced his retirement. Citing pain and hypothyroidism- a condition which causes weight gain among other issues- as the reason for his retirement. And so an 18-year career of one of football’s greatest ever players came to an end.

International Career

 

Ronaldo nationality

is Brazilian and he has become one of Brazil’s finest ever players since his debut against Argentina in 23 March 1994. As a 17-year-old Ronaldo would be a part of the World Cup winning Brazil team in 94 but it wasn’t until 1997 that he would truly experience success with brazil, helping them win the Copa America and the Confederations Cup.

A year later Ronaldo, who was by now two times FIFA World Player of the Year and one time Ballon d’Or winner being only 22, helped Brazil reach the 1998 World Cup final but suffered a seizure on the day of the final, causing his appearance to be in doubt. Nonetheless, he went on to play in the final but he was obviously affected by the seizure. Brazil ended up losing 3-0 to hosts France. Ronaldo did however win the Golden Ball for the player of the tournament.

Ronaldo helped Brazil win another Copa America in 1999 but was sidelined with injuries for the following two seasons. However, he made a miraculous comeback from injury, helping Brazil win the 2002 World Cup by scoring 8 goals in the tournament.

Although Brazil was one of 2006 World Cup’s favorites to win the competition, the now aged 2002 World Cup squad couldn’t dominate teams as they did before and although Ronaldo ended up scoring his record-breaking 15th goal in the World Cup, they were knocked out by France in the quarter-finals. Besides a ceremonial match to honor him in 2011, his match against France would be Ronaldo’s last ever appearance for Brazil.

Style of Play

A supremely quick dribbler who excelled at goal scoring just as much, Ronaldo was the perfect striker and player. His lightning quick reflexes and his vision for attacking made it seem like he was playing against players in double speed!

At his prime Ronaldo was the quickest ever with the ball but he also had a precise control over the ball that wasn’t seen before, which made him extremely dangerous with the ball. He has been credited with changing the way a striker operates even by his rivals like Thierry Henry.

Later in his career after recovering from injury, he also successfully altered his play style, leaning more towards his goal scoring prowess, yet he never lost his touch and control. Ronaldo simply redefined what it is to be a No. 9.

Reception

Widely regarded as one of the best players ever, there is perhaps only

Lionel Messi

and

Cristiano Ronaldo

who have been more praised than Ronaldo himself and even these two players have credited Ronaldo as one of their influences, with Lionel Messi claiming Ronaldo to be the best striker he ever saw.

Honestly the praises for Ronaldo as a complete forward and player could be an article on their own, suffice it to say that there will never be a player like him, who could dazzle that much and yet be determined to win and be a part of the team.

Perhaps the best praise any footballer or even a sportsman could get is seeing that other players try to emulate them and there isn’t a player other than Ronaldo that has so many legions of imitators following in his footsteps and yet no one, even Cristiano and Messi, could surpass Ronaldo’s levels of performances when he was at his prime.

Goal Celebration

Ronaldo has perhaps one of the most iconic celebrations in football with his famous finger wag, seen in the picture below.

Ronaldo Outside Football

Unlike many retired footballers, Ronaldo never showed any interest in management but instead he has shown a keen eye for business and as of September 2018 has become a majority shareholder and owner of the newly promoted La Liga side,

Real Valladolid

.

Ronaldo has since bought 82% of the club’s shares and they seem on the right track to improve, finishing 16th and 13th in La Liga in Ronaldo’s first two seasons as the owner.

Ronaldo Personal Life

Our Ronaldo biography wouldn’t be a complete without mentioning his personal life. So read on as we take a look at Ronaldo life story, relationships and philanthropy in this

Ronaldo bio

.

Family, Children and Relationships

Born in the suburbs of Rio de Janeiro, the city of Christ,

Ronaldo religion

is Christianity. Although he came from humble beginnings, during the height of his fame, he enjoyed a rather lavish lifestyle, constantly throwing parties. His lifestyle choices rarely had an influence on his performances so there was seldom any criticism towards it.

Ronaldo has also had various relationships but four of them stand out. Milene Domingues, who is the mother of Ronaldo’s first born child, Ronald. The couple dated from 1999 to 2003. Then Ronaldo dated Daniella Cicarelli for a short period in 2005. His next serious relationship was with Maria Beatriz Antony in 2007, the couple married and have 2 daughters from their marriage but later they divorced and Ronaldo is now dating the 30-year-old model Celina Locks.

Ronaldo has 4 children 2 sons and 2 daughters, Ronald, Alexander, Maria Alice and Maria Sophia. His second son was from a brief relationship he had with Michele Umezu. Alexander was born in 2005 but it wasn’t until 2010 that Ronaldo took a paternity test to confirm he is the father.

Philanthropy

Having been a United Nations Development Programme Goodwill Ambassador since 2000, Ronaldo has been heavily involved with a lot of charity foundations, events and causes.

He is involved in Matches Against Poverty with his former teammate Zinedine Zidane and the two have raised money for various causes.

These include the fight against Ebola outbreak and aid to the people of Philippines after the Typhoon Haiyan.

Legal Issues

Although Ronaldo was supposedly a notorious partier and liked to lead a colorful life, there weren’t that many incidents involving him that needed law enforcement intervention except for an incident involving 3 transvesti prostitutes which ended up being just a misunderstanding. So his legal record remains clean, for the most part.

Ronaldo Career Statistics

It’s time to review some of Ronaldo’s statistics in this section of Ronaldo biography, both at the clubs he played at and the French national team:

Club

Ronaldo biography

isn’t complete without his general statistics in the clubs that he played, starting with Cruzeiro where he played for 2 seasons scoring 44 goals in 47 matches being only 17 at the time. He then moved on to PSV Eindhoven in Netherlands’ Eredivise, just like one of his idols, Romario, and once again ended up impressing everyone by scoring goals left and right. He ended his time there by scoring 54 goals in 57 matches winning a domestic cup.

After Eindhoven came La Liga giants, Barcelona, where Ronaldo stayed for a single season, scoring 47 goals in 49 matches in all competitions before moving on to Inter Milan, where he would stay for 5 seasons the majority of which he was injured. Nonetheless, he ended up scoring 59 goals in 99 matches for Inter after becoming the champions in 2002 World Cup, he secured a move to Real Madrid.

Although Ronaldo never performed to the levels he did prior to his injuries, he was still the best at what he did, scoring 104 goals in 177 matches for Real Madrid before joining Ac Milan in 2006, where he would once again be plagued by injuries, ending his two season spell with Milan with 9 goals in 20 matches.His final bout as a player came back in Brazilian Serie A, with Corinthians where he scored 35 goals in 69 matches before retiring from football in 2011.

International

Making his debut for Brazil on 23 March 1994 against Argentina, Ronaldo has since become one of the greatest Brazilian footballers ever.

Ronaldo appeared in 98 matches for Brazil and scoring 62 goals (15 of which were in the various World Cups).

He is Brazil’s third best goal scorer behind Pele and Neymar and has experienced 3 different World Cup finals, winning and playing in 2 of them.

Managerial

The managerial side of the game never really interested Ronaldo and he didn’t venture into it after his retirement. He does however have a great eye for business and has become the owner of Real Valladolid, a La Liga side.

Ronaldo Honors

In the final section of Ronaldo biography, we take a brief look at his achievements, either team or individual achievements, throughout his years in the Brazilian Serie A to his later years playing for PSV, Barcelona, Inter and Real Madrid and his later years at AC Milan and back in Brazilian Serie A.

Ronaldo’s professional career started Cruzeiro in Brazil, the 16-year-old dazzled everyone and helped Cruzeiro win a Copa do Brasil and a state league championship before making his way across Europe in 1994 to play for PSV Eindhoven. There he once again showed that he is a legitimate future star, scoring 54 goals in 57 matches and helping PSV to a domestic cup.

Then after two seasons a short but glorious spell at Barcelona followed where he helped the Catalan giants win a Copa del Rey and Cup Winners’ Cup before moving on to Inter in 1997. Although he helped Inter win a UEFA Cup in his first season, no other trophies followed and his time there was riddled with injuries.

A relatively successful spell at Real Madrid followed where he won a La Liga and an Intercontinental cup as well as the Pichichi award for best goal scorer in 2003. Next he moved on to AC Milan before finishing his career in Brazil with

Corinthians

winning yet again another state league and Copa do Brasil.

Ronaldo has become one of the most decorated Brazilian players, being part of Brazil’s squad in 4 World Cups from 1994 to 2006 and winning 2 of those. In addition to that he has also won 2 Copa Americas with Brazil.

On individual level, he is one of the most decorated players ever, winning 3 FIFA World Player of the Year and 2 Ballon d’Ors as well as numerous other awards and recognitions and various Hall of Fame appearances, such as winning the Golden Ball of the 1998 World Cup and Golden Boot of 2002 as well as European Golden Shoe in 1996-97 season among countless other trophies and accolades. And with that we conclude our

Ronaldo biography

and we sincerely hope that you enjoyed reading it.

 

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source: SportMob