The power of Ronaldo on & off the pitch

Portugal striker Cristiano Ronaldo. (AFP)
Portugal striker Cristiano Ronaldo. (AFP)

By removing a couple of bottles of Coca Cola from his desk, he warned all the youngsters about the perils of not maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

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Published: Thu 17 Jun 2021, 1:11 AM

Last updated: Thu 17 Jun 2021, 1:26 AM

The perfect role model that he is, Cristiano Ronaldo once again demonstrated the qualities that have made him one of the world’s most iconic athletes. A man who is obsessed with his fitness level as well as his impeccable record in front of the goal, it’s not surprising that the Portuguese striker decided to make a statement during a Euro press conference. By removing from his desk a couple of bottles of Coca Cola, the American carbonated soft drink that’s unhealthy for athletes and one that still finds a place among the prominent sponsors at myriad global sporting events, including the Euro, the Juventus player warned all the youngsters around the world who look up to him, about the perils of not maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

It’s a universally acknowledged fact in the footballing world that Ronaldo is scarcely as gifted as his great rival Lionel Messi. While he is fast, athletic and powerful, he lacks the grace and the wondrous natural ability that Messi was born with. And yet, it’s Ronaldo that has got more goals than his Argentinian rival. Yet, it’s Ronaldo that has got more Champions League titles than the Barcelona talisman. Unlike Messi who has cut a frustrating figure in Argentina colours, it’s Ronaldo that inspired Portugal to win their only major trophy at international level. Again, it’s Ronaldo that has scored more goals in the knockout stages of the Champions League than anyone else that has ever set foot on a football field. And, at the ripe old age of 36, a day after his anti-carbonated soft drink stance at the press conference, it was Ronaldo again that broke the all-time goal-scorer’s record at the Euros, with his relentless pursuit of goals culminating in a brace, breaking the Hungarian hearts in Budapest.

Ronaldo’s astounding success year after year is the result of his obsession with what he eats and how much he trains. Michel Salgado, the former teammate of Ronaldo at Real Madrid and a Dubai resident, told Khaleej Times couple of years ago that the former Manchester United star’s attention to detail has helped him perform at a very high level in his 30s. Remarkably, Ronaldo’s anti-carbonated soft drink stance saw Coca Cola’s market value fall by $4 billion. That’s the power of Cristiano Ronaldo, a man who was born into a poor family in the Portuguese island of Madeira. A man whose brilliant work-ethic and sacrifices have placed him in the pantheon of footballing immortals. He would never be remembered for the skills that Pele, Maradona, Messi and George Best were born with. But Ronaldo is the perfect example of an athlete who can embrace greatness by deleting the word temptation from the dictionary. And chances are that you might not see Cristiano Ronaldo enjoy a sip of Cola even after he hangs up his boots.

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