Cristiano Ronaldo, The Pride of Portugal

It pays to be Cristiano Ronaldo.

He’s the established second-greatest player in the world. He makes so many millions a year, there’s really no point in being too specific about the figure. He does this.

He’s played for Sporting, Manchester United, and Real Madrid. Chances are, he’ll be bored with whatever team he’s on at the time you’re reading this, and he’ll set a new international transfer fee record for the second (or third) time in his career.

Not bad for a kid from Madeira

In 2012, The Guardian and reporter Daniel Taylor ranked Ronaldo as the No. 2 footballer in the world, behind only Argentina’s/Barcelona’s Leo Messi:

“One story springs to mind. It is March 2007 at Old Trafford and a Ronaldo-inspired Manchester United have just thrashed Bolton Wanderers 4-1. Henrik Pedersen, assigned the job of trying to stop him, is so befuddled he is substituted after 28 minutes. Afterwards, a reporter asks the visiting manager, Sam Allardyce, whether Ronaldo’s performance could leave his players with psychological scars. “Scars?” Allardyce replies. “We’re going to need a fucking plastic surgeon after that.” Ronaldo can do that to the opposition. He has already done enough to establish himself as one of the genuine greats. Better than Messi? Not quite – but what is also very clear is that Ronaldo, is determined to prolong the argument.”

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