Five Lessons You Can Learn From Cristiano Ronaldo

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Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the most decorated players of all time, not only his generation. Some of his records include the most goals and assists in the UEFA Champions League (137 and 42 respectively), most goals in a single Champions League season (17), most goals in a UEFA European Championship (14), the most national team appearances in Europe (180), and the most international goals (115). 

He has also received five FIFA Ballon d’Or awards. Only Messi has won the award more times (six) than Ronaldo. Over the course of his career spanning from Portugal to England, Spain, and Italy, Ronaldo has won 32 major trophies.

Cristiano Ronaldo records that may never be broken

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He is an athlete who doesn’t believe in impossibilities and will always look to push the limits. That’s he has achieved certain feats that may be difficult for future generations of footballers to reach. Some of his records that may never get broken include:

Over 50 goals per season, for six consecutive seasons 

We can all agree that at his peak, Ronaldo is quite unstoppable. But this is a phenomenal record that leaves even the most ardent of his fans in awe! He tore defences apart during his nine-year stay in Spain. What’s more astonishing is the consistency with which he did it. 

Between 2010 and 2016, Cristiano Ronaldo scored 50+ goals per season across all competitions. Here’s a breakdown of the goals for each season:

  • 2010/11- 53 goals
  • 2011/12- 60 goals
  • 2012/13- 55 goals
  • 2013/14- 51 goals
  • 2014/15- 61 goals
  • 2015/16- 51 goals

Most Champions League goals

There’s a reason why Cristiano Ronaldo is regarded as the King of Champions League, or Mr Champions League. That’s because he is the competition’s leading goalscorer. 

He has won the Champions League five times (a record on its own). But it’s his prowess in front of the goal that led to the four Champions League titles with Real Madrid and one with Manchester United. He leads the Champions League all-time goalscoring charts with 128 goals. The only other player with over 100 goals in the competition is Messi.

Ronaldo also holds the records for the most goals in a single campaign and became the first player to reach the century mark.

Fastest player to score 150 La Liga goals

In 2009, Ronaldo moved to Real Madrid in what was then a world record transfer fee. By the time he was leaving for Juventus in 2018, he had already justified his price tag. Only 20 players in the entire history of La Liga have ever reached the 150-goal mark. 

Ronaldo is the only one among them to reach that milestone in the least amount of time. He scored his 150th La Liga goal in his 140th match against Getafe. 

Win the league in three of the top five European leagues

Cristiano Ronaldo has won a league title in England, Spain, and Italy with Manchester United, Real Madrid, and Juventus respectively. He is the first player to win three league titles in England, Spain and Italy.

This is not an easy feat to achieve. Some players considered among the greats never won a single top flight league title. Gary Lineker, Fernando Torres, Steven Gerrard, Jamie Carragher, Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink, Bobby Moore, Daniele De Rossi, Jay-Jay Okocha, Marco Reus, and Juan Mata have never won a league title despite having had illustrious careers. 

In fact, Lineker had more individual awards than silverware!

Lessons you can learn from the Portugal great

Photo/ GQ

What Cristiano Ronaldo has achieved isn’t by sheer luck. He is a hardworking professional with impressive work ethics. 

When he re-signed for Manchester United, the other players were so impressed by his dedication to staying fit that they avoided dessert when they saw his plate only had healthy food. 

Cristiano Ronaldo is the perfect example of how work ethic can ignite a career. Here are five lessons you can learn from him on how to be a professional regardless of your field of practice:

1. Be confident of your abilities

Most of Ronaldo’s records wouldn’t have been achieved if he wasn’t confident of his abilities. He took on the best in the world without fear, even when he was just an 18-year old starting out at Manchester United. 

“There are people out there who hate me and who say I’m arrogant, vain and whatever. That’s all part of my success. I am made to be the best.”

To become the best, you must believe in your abilities. It’s not arrogance, it’s confidence. 

2. Have the desire to win

From early on in his career, Ronaldo was outspoken on what he was looking to achieve- be the greatest player in the world. The belief and the desire got him going even against the toughest of opponents. Criticism to him was a fuel to propel him to greater heights. 

“I am not a perfectionist, but I like to feel that things are done well. More important than that, I feel an endless need to learn, to improve, to evolve, not only to please the coach and the fans, but also to feel satisfied with myself. It is my conviction that there are no limits to learning, and that it can never stop, no matter what our age.”

3. Put in the work

Confidence and desire won’t take you anywhere if you lack work ethic and don’t put in the work. 

Some of his teammates describe as “obsessed.” He trained harder than anyone else and is often the first one to arrive in training and leave last. Quinton Fortune, who worked with him at Manchester United, said he was always doing extra training compared to his teammates. 

He said that Ronaldo wanted to be stronger, quicker, and better every single day. So he practised. Ronaldo believes that talent without working hard is nothing.

4. Be a leader, even without a title

There’s no denying that Ronaldo is a natural leader and has a massive influence on the people who work with him. He becomes a leader in the dressing room for every team he walks into, regardless of whether he’s handed the captain’s armband or not. His “calma” celebration has helped to inspire his team to great comebacks from losing positions.

Moral of the story: You don’t need a title to be a leader.

5. Find a mentor

Photo/ John Peters- Getty Images

“He’s been my father in sport, one of the most important and influential factors in my career!”

That’s Cristiano Ronaldo’s description of Sir Alex Ferguson, who was his manager during his first stint at Manchester United. Ronaldo believes that Fergie helped to get him on the right path to achieve what he has achieved.

You may be good at whatever you do, but you need a mentor. Find one!

Above all, always have time for your family. He has always invited his mother to his award ceremonies. He also finds time to bond and enjoy vacations with his family. Recently, he announced that they are expecting twins. Congratulations to Ronaldo and his spouse, Georgina Rodriguez.

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