Cristiano Ronaldo will always be my answer to “if you could choose one person to have dinner with, who would it be?”
Known by most as one of the best soccer players of all time with a charismatic personality, Ronaldo has always an incredible role model for me.
As made obvious by my public obsession, I am absolutely in love with soccer. When I was young, Cristiano Ronaldo was the first famous player I learned about. Back then, he was becoming more and more famous by day and was scoring goals left and right on Manchester United. As I grew up, Cristiano got better, more confident, and eventually joined my favorite team, Real Madrid. Long story short, watching Ronaldo play soccer became an inspiration to me and I strived to better my skills on the pitch. But, I strongly believe to this day that he is also an amazing role model off the pitch.
Cristiano Ronaldo grew up in Madeira, Portugal, a Portuguese region that was put on the map by the soccer icon. Ronaldo is driving expensive cars and living in Italian mansions today, but he grew up really impoverished. His dad was a gardener, his mom was a cook, and he was the youngest of 4 children. Life was anything but easy for Ronaldo; his way out was through soccer.
This is one of the many reasons why I admire Cristiano Ronaldo so much. Unlike a lot of other successful people, Ronaldo got to where he is by working hard and fighting for his dream of becoming a soccer player. Literally nothing was handed to him.
I remember reading several articles about interviews with Ronaldo’s past teammates, and all of them recalled that he was always the first to arrive to practice, and the last to leave; he would put in some extra training and practice by himself. His work ethic is truly incredible, and serves as a great role model for me and really anyone.
“If you think you’re perfect already, then you never will be.”
― Cristiano Ronaldo
Cristiano Ronaldo values and loves his family so. much. His relationship with his mother is already well known by his fans as she is always at games, award shows, social media posts, etc.
In the documentary about Ronaldo that I recently watched, I was so touched during a scene where Ronaldo’s mother, in tears, described how she did not originally want to have Ronaldo when she found out she was pregnant. She explained that deciding to have him was a blessing and Ronaldo has helped her beyond words. Ronaldo treats his mother with with the utmost respect and love, and it really is inspirational.
Also, Ronaldo is an amazing father. Going back to the documentary I watched, the main focus of the film is obviously Ronaldo, but in a way, it also is his first son, Cristiano Junior, which really shows how important his children are to him.
Ronaldo always puts his son (and now his 3 other children!) first and it is amazing to watch. Ronaldo is always supporting them at soccer games and making sure they’re doing well in all other aspects of his life. I think it’s really an admirable thing that such a busy, famous father revolves his life around his children.
Respect is another thing that Ronaldo has taught me to always keep in mind. I can name several instances in which Ronaldo showed incredibly respect at all times, but there is one instance that really stayed with me.
A few years back, a young Japanese boy who was a big fan of Ronaldo got the opportunity to ask him a question during a press conference. The boy was nervous and had clearly practiced his question a million times beforehand. He asked Ronaldo his question in Portuguese, which was obviously not perfect as he does not speak the language. Before Ronaldo could answer, the press room filled with laughter at the boy’s Portuguese and although I doubt that it was meant to be cruel, the boy’s face showed his embarrassment.
Ronaldo immediately defended the boy and told the room to stop laughing; then, he complimented the boy’s Portuguese with a smile and answered his question. This incident has really stayed with me over the past few years because it showed me how genuinely kind Ronaldo is. He treated the boy with such kindness and defended him without hesitation, and I could tell that it was not just fake kindness for the cameras.
This incident is just one of many in which Ronaldo showed his respectful personality, and he’s a great role model for people everywhere, regardless of whether they are a fan or not.
Lastly, Ronaldo’s confidence is something that really changed my life. Some may say that he is narcissistic, and I can almost see where they are coming from. But, his confidence in himself and his talent is so amazing. My favorite quote of all time is when Ronaldo actually said, “maybe they hate me because I’m too good”. Of course, I laughed when I first read this. But, Ronaldo earned his reputation as a phenomenal athlete through pure hard work and I think the way he openly celebrates it is inspirational.
Now, I’m not saying that I walk around saying I’m amazing or I’m the best; I’ll leave that to legends like Cristiano. But, his confidence is something we can all learn from. If you’re good at something, don’t pretend you don’t know it and don’t try to hide it.
Cristiano Ronaldo is one of a kind, and I am truly lucky that he was so famous and iconic during my childhood because I was able to learn so much from him as I grew up. A lot of people may not understand why I admire him so much, but I truly believe he is simply an amazing athlete, role model, and human being.
There is at least one thing that anybody and everybody can learn from Cristiano Ronaldo.
“Your love makes me strong, your hate makes me unstoppable.”
― Cristiano Ronaldo