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Cristiano Ronaldo (full name Cristiano Messias Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro; born 5 February 1985, Funchal, Madeira, Portugal) is a Portuguese professional football player who plays his club football for Manchester United of England. Full name: Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro
Nick Names Cris, Ron, Ronnie, The Sultan Of The Stepover
Date of birth: February 5, 1985 (Monday)
Place of birth: Funchal, Portugal
Height: 184 cm (6 ft. 1 in.)
His favourite movies: The Sixth Sense
His favourite actress: Angelina Jolie
His favourite colors: White and Red
His favourite number: 7
His favourite Cola: Coca Cola
Hair / Eyes : Light Brown / Brown
Religion : Christian - Catholic
Mother's Name : Maria Dolores dos Santos Aveiro
Father's Name : Jose Diniz Aveiro
Brothers : Hugo Aveiro
Sisters : Elma Aveiro and Katia Aveiro
Uncle : Alex Aveiro
Cell Phone : Nokia 6230 - Black see this
Cars : silver Porsche, red Ferrari 435
Adverts: Has appeared in several Nike adverts
Has appeared in a Suzuki TV advert.

He doesn't smoke!
Scored Manchester United's 1,000th league goal against Middlesbrough FC.

Filmography:
2006 FIFA World Cup Germany (2006) (mini) TV Series .... Himself
Manchester United: Play Like Champions (2003) (V) .... Himself


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Cristiano RonaldoIt's normal, it's no problem for me. But I don't want to be compared to anyone. I'd like to impose my own style of play and do the best for myself and for the club here.

Cristiano Ronaldo


For other persons named Ronaldo, see Ronaldo (disambiguation).
Cristiano Ronaldo

Personal information
Full name Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro
Date of birth February 5, 1985 (1985-02-05) (age 23)
Place of birth Funchal, Madeira, Portugal
Height 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)[1]
Playing position Right winger, Striker
Club information
Current club Manchester United
Number 7
Youth clubs
CF Andorinha
CD Nacional
Sporting CP
Senior clubs1
Years Club App (Gls)*
2001–2003
2003– Sporting CP
Manchester United 025 0(3)
151 (54)
National team2
2003– Portugal 054 (20)
1 Senior club appearances and goals
counted for the domestic league only and
correct as of 14:38, 10 February 2008 (UTC).
2 National team caps and goals correct
as of 10:11, 17 October 2007 (UTC).
* Appearances (Goals)

Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro, OIH (pronounced [kɾiʃˈtiɐnu ʁuˈnaɫdu]), (born 5 February 1985 in Funchal, Madeira), better known as Cristiano Ronaldo, is a professional Portuguese footballer. He plays for the English club Manchester United and Portugal. Ronaldo has played primarily as a winger for United and can play on either wing but mostly right wing.[2] He has additionally also played in a central attacking role for Manchester United as well as a second striker.[3]

Contents
1 Biography
2 Playing style
3 Career
3.1 Early career
3.2 Sporting Clube de Portugal
3.3 Manchester United
4 International career
4.1 World Cup incident
4.2 International goals
5 Honours
5.1 Team honours with Manchester United
5.2 Honours with national team
5.3 Individual honours and awards
5.4 Special achievements
5.5 Non-hereditary Orders and Titles
6 Career statistics
7 References
8 External links



Biography
Ronaldo was born in Madeira, Portugal, to Maria Dolores dos Santos Aveiro and the late José Dinis Aveiro (1954 – London, 5 September 2005). He has one older brother, Hugo (b. 1975), and two elder sisters, Elma (b. 1974) and Liliana Cátia (b. Madeira, 5 October 1976). Liliana Cátia works as a singer by the stage name "Ronalda" in Portugal. Cristiano's second given name ("Ronaldo") is relatively rare in Portugal. His parents named him after former Hollywood actor and U.S. President Ronald Reagan due to his late father's respect for the man.[4]


Playing style
Ronaldo is a two-footed player, this allowing him to play anywhere up front: right, left or through the middle. This has enabled Ronaldo and left winger Ryan Giggs to switch wings occasionally, allowing Manchester United to further confuse their opponents.[5] Ronaldo has superb technical ability. Besides his multiple step-over moves, he also developed a wide array of skills, making him a tricky and unpredictable winger to come up against.[6] Ronaldo's pace and blistering runs, either down the wings or cutting into the middle, has further established him as an important player to Manchester United. He can also strike powerful shots from outside the box. His unique playing style is a far cry from traditional wingers of the past and he can best be described as a winger and a striker rolled into one.[7] Ronaldo is extremely good in the air and has scored a fair number of headed goals as well. In addition, his 'pin ball free-kicks' are also noted for their swerve and dip. He is also adept at taking spot kicks and is Manchester United's first choice penalty-taker.


Career

Early career
He began kicking a football when he was three, and when he started primary school at age six, his passion for the sport was obvious. His favourite boyhood team was SL Benfica even though he would later join their rival, Sporting. He first played for an amateur team, Andorinha, where his father was the kit man, when he was just eight years old. By 1995, at just ten years of age, Cristiano Ronaldo's reputation was growing in Portugal. Madeira's top two teams, CS Marítimo and CD Nacional were both interested in signing him. Marítimo, the bigger team, missed a crucial meeting with Rui Santos, Ronaldo's manager at Andorinha, and as a result, Ronaldo signed for Nacional. After a title-winning campaign at Nacional, Ronaldo went on a three day trial with Sporting who subsequently signed him for an undisclosed sum.[8]


Sporting Clube de Portugal
Ronaldo joined Sporting's other youth players who trained at the Alcochete, the club's "football factory," where he received first-class instruction. In his first few months in Lisbon, he had to defend himself from the rest of the local players as they had taunted him over his Madeiran accent. A growth spurt had also obstructed his progress at the club. However, Ronaldo eventually went on to become the only player in Sporting’s history to play for the Under-16, Under-17, Under-18, B team and first-team within a season.[9] Sporting realised that Ronaldo needed more support and arranged for his mother to join him. He scored two goals on his Sporting debut against Moreirense. He also featured for Portugal in the UEFA Under 17 Championships.[10]

His performances at the UEFA Under 17 championship drew him to the attention of the wider football world. He was first spotted by former Liverpool F.C. manager Gérard Houllier at the age of 16. However, Liverpool later declined him because he was too young and needed some time to develop into a top footballer.[11] However, he came to the attention of Sir Alex Ferguson in the summer of 2003, when Sporting beat Manchester United 3-1 in the inauguration of the Alvalade XXI stadium in Lisbon. Ronaldo demonstrated his ability to play on both wings. His performance in the match impressed the Manchester United players, who spoke to their manager about a possible transfer bid for Ronaldo.[12]


Manchester United
Ferguson decided that he wanted Ronaldo for his team, who were in the market for a right-sided midfielder with the departure of David Beckham to Real Madrid; Ronaldo was signed for a fee of £12.24 million,[13] becoming the club's first ever Portuguese player. Ronaldo was handed the number 7 shirt on his arrival, a shirt number that has belonged to some of the greatest Manchester United legends, such as George Best, Bryan Robson, Eric Cantona and Beckham. Ronaldo initially asked for the number 28 which he wore at Sporting, as he did not want the pressure of living up to the expectation linked to the number 7 shirt. "After I joined, the manager asked me what number I'd like. I said 28. But Ferguson said 'no, you're going to have No. 7' and the famous shirt was an extra source of motivation. I was forced to live up to such an honour".[14]


Ronaldo playing for Manchester UnitedRonaldo made his debut for Manchester United as a 60th minute substitute against Bolton Wanderers at Old Trafford, a 4-0 Manchester United win. On 29 October 2005, Ronaldo scored Manchester United's 1000th Premiership goal, in a 4-1 loss at the hands of Middlesbrough. He bagged a double double in February, with two goals at home to Fulham and another pair at Fratton Park, and also scored in the following Premiership game against Wigan taking his tally to 8 Premiership goals. On 26 February 2006, Ronaldo played in the Carling Cup Final against Wigan in the Millennium Stadium at Cardiff, and scored a goal - taking his season's tally to 10 goals. He was named FIFPro Special Young Player of the Year 2005, the only award to be voted for by fans. He received the same accolade the following year in 2006. He was also ranked 20th in the FIFA Player of the Year 2005 standings.

In 2006, a row between him and Ruud van Nistelrooy at the Carrington training ground intensified speculation about their roles at the club.[15] However, Ronaldo signed a new deal with United that would last until 2010. Ronaldo said of the deal, "United have stood by me and been there for me and I want to repay that".[16]

Despite the World Cup incident, Ronaldo remained popular with the Manchester United faithful when he played (and scored) in his first Premiership match since the 2006 World Cup. Manchester United fans could clearly be heard chanting "there's only one Ronaldo" at various points in the game, in a 5-1 win over Fulham F.C.. He won the Barclays Player of the Month for November 2006. By December 2006, Ronaldo had become one of United's most influential players, scoring six goals in three league games to bring his overall tally up to 12 goals. He came on at half-time as a substitute against Wigan Athletic and immediately stamped his influence on the match with 2 goals in the space of a few minutes. Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson concedes he would lose his wager with the Portuguese in his current form after setting a target of 15 goals for the season. The Scot remarked that he was "pleased for him because he works hard at his game. He's still learning the game. His ability to pass the ball has helped him this season. His passing has been very good. That just shows he is maturing. He's been fantastic, and he's getting better all the time".[17] In December, he was awarded the Barclays Player of the Month Award for the second successive month, becoming the third ever player in the Premiership to do so (after Arsenal's Dennis Bergkamp in 1997 and Robbie Fowler in 1996).[18][19] Ronaldo scored his 50th goal for Manchester United in the game against arch-rivals Manchester City which turned out to be the decisive goal which helped Manchester United claim the Premiership for the first time in 4 years.

As the end of each season approached, particularly in 2006 and 2007, it became traditional for rumours to start floating that Ronaldo was unsettled at Manchester United and wanted to play for Real Madrid - the rumours frequently originating from the board of Real Madrid who were reported in April 2007 to be willing to pay an unprecedented €80 million (£54 million) for Ronaldo.[20] At the beginning of March 2007, however, Ronaldo, as well as Manchester United, confirmed that they would be negotiating an extension to his current contract. On 13 April 2007, Ronaldo signed a five-year, £120,000-a-week deal with United, making him the highest-paid player in United's history.[21] He said, "I am very happy at the club and I want to win trophies and hopefully we will do that this season".[22]


Rooney and Ronaldo (Right) depicted at Old TraffordDuring the 2006-07 season, Ronaldo won the PFA Players' Player of the Year and PFA Young Player of the Year awards. He received the two awards during a ceremony on the 22nd of April, 2007. In addition to winning the two awards (an accomplishment that has only been matched once - in 1977 by Andy Gray),[23] Ronaldo was also named a member of the PFA Premiership Team of the Year, alongside seven of his fellow Manchester United teammates. On 24 April 2007, Ronaldo completed the treble by winning the PFA Fans' Player of the Year, an award which is given by winning the most votes from fans all over the United Kingdom. In addition, he was awarded the 2007 Portuguese Footballer of the Year, and at the beginning of May 2007 Ronaldo was also awarded the Football Writers' Association Award. He also received two awards from the club itself, the Player of the Year award, and the Fans' Player of the Year award.

The 2006-07 was tainted with several diving incidents. During a match with Middlesbrough F.C., he was criticised for diving by rival manager Gareth Southgate.[24] On 4 February 2007, in a match against Tottenham Hotspur F.C., Ronaldo was caught in yet another diving controversy, after winning United a controversial penalty despite seeming to receive little or no contact from Tottenham's Steed Malbranque.[25]

Ronaldo has occasionally had problems with his temper during games. He was sent off in a game against Manchester City and received a one-match ban imposed by UEFA for a "one-fingered gesture" towards Benfica fans in a UEFA Champions League match in December 2005.[26] While playing for Portugal in a friendly against Luxembourg he was given a yellow card for pushing Jeff Strasser in the throat in retaliation after Strasser tackled him. Felipe Scolari warned Ronaldo to keep his temper in check during the World Cup.[27] Cristiano Ronaldo was sent of for an alleged headbutt of Portsmouth player Richard Hughes during United's second match of the 2007-08 season, and was therefore banned for the subsequent three games. After the match, Sir Alex Ferguson claimed that Ronaldo had "fallen into the trap".[28] Ronaldo said he had "learned a lot" from the experience and would not let players "provoke" him in future.[29]

Ronaldo's 2007-08 season started badly with the sending off at Portsmouth. However, in his first game following the ban Ronaldo scored the only goal in the 60th minute of a Champions League away game against Sporting Lisbon on return to his old club. He was given a standing ovation by the Sporting supporters for his muted celebrations following the goal. Following this match, Ronaldo has kept his goalscoring boots on in the away fixture against Birmingham City F.C. The goalscoring continued with a brace against Wigan Athletic F.C. Ronaldo contributed three goals in both the home and away fixtures against Dynamo Kiev, a goal against Arsenal F.C. and another brace against Blackburn Rovers. An injury time winner, coming from a free-kick in the home fixture against Sporting Lisbon led Manchester United to the top of the group in the UEFA Champions League [30].On December 2, 2007, Ronaldo was officially announced as the runner up in the European Footballer of the Year standings, finishing behind the winner, Kaka, with 277 points. [31] Ronaldo scored a match-winning double against Fulham F.C., one of which includes a memorable volley [32]. He had also been booked for diving by referee Rob Styles when he went down under a challenge from Fulham's goalkeeper, Antti Niemi. Sir Alex Ferguson had claimed that it "His reputation from years ago is still playing on the minds of referees. It was a ridiculous decision." [33] In addition to his two late penalties in the home fixtures against Derby County F.C. [34] and Everton F.C. , he scored a free-kick just before half-time against Sunderland A.F.C. [35]. On December 17 2007, it was officially announced that Ronaldo came in third in the FIFA World Player of the Year awards, finishing behind Kaká and Lionel Messi.[36] A 2-1 defeat in the away fixture against West Ham United F.C., Ronaldo scored in the match but missed a penalty.

Ronaldo scored his first hat trick for Manchester United, in the 6-0 win against Newcastle United at Old Trafford on 12 January 2008, bringing Manchester United up to the top of English Premier League table. He scored with a free kick in the 49th minute and went on to score twice more in the 70th and 88th minutes of the match. [37] The very next game, he scored the second goal in the 2-0 win against Reading on 19 January 2008, bringing his goal tally to 23, equalling his tally for the whole of the 2006/2007 season. [38]


International career
Ronaldo had previously played for Portugal at the 2002 UEFA European Under-17 Championship and at the U18 and U21 level. He eventually made his full international debut in August 2003, coming on in the second half of a 1-0 victory against Kazakhstan. Ronaldo scored Portugal's only goal in their 2-1 loss to Greece in the opening match of Euro 2004 and the first goal of the semi final against the Netherlands, which Portugal won 2-1. The final saw a rematch of the opening game of the tournament, with Greece once again emerging victorious. Even though Ronaldo could not add to his two goals, his performances at the tournament earned him a place in the team of the tournament. [39]

Ronaldo subsequently represented Portugal at the 2004 Summer Olympics, and was the second highest scorer in FIFA World Cup qualification in the European zone with 7 goals. [39]

Ronaldo scored his first World Cup goal against Iran with a penalty kick. [40]In the Round of 16, he left Portugal's 1-0 win over Netherlands injured after a high tackle by Khalid Boulahrouz. [41] However, he returned in the next match in the quarter - final against England.

Ronaldo was named the national team captain for the first time in a friendly match against Brazil on February 6, 2007, a day after his 22nd birthday. This move was in honor of the Portuguese Football Federation president, Carlos Silva, who had died two days before. Scolari explained, "Mr Silva asked me to make him captain as a gesture. He thought the English fans would give him a difficult time and this was a response. He is too young to be captain but Mr Silva asked me and now he is no longer with us."[42]

Ronaldo scored a total of 8 goals in Portugal's UEFA Euro 2008 qualifying campaign. [43]


World Cup incident
On 8 July 2006, after the sending off of United team-mate Wayne Rooney for stamping on Ricardo Carvalho in the Quarter Final of the 2006 World Cup between England and Portugal, there was much speculation in the English media that he had influenced Rooney's red card by complaining aggressively to the referee. Ronaldo has said that Rooney was a friend, and that he was not trying to get Rooney a red card.[44] Rooney said, "I bear no ill feeling to Cristiano but am disappointed that he chose to get involved."[45]

The Sun published a dart board with a picture of Ronaldo as the bull's-eye in a similar fashion to the one made after the 1998 World Cup for David Beckham by The Daily Mirror, another English tabloid.[46][47][48] The angry reaction in England forced Ronaldo to consider leaving United. After the incident, he told reporters that he thought he "should get out of Manchester as the circumstances are not right to keep playing there".[49] He allegedly told the Spanish sports daily Marca that he wished to move to Real Madrid.[50]

In response to the speculation, Sir Alex Ferguson sent his assistant manager Carlos Queiroz to speak to Ronaldo in Portugal, hoping to change the young player's mind,[51] whilst Rooney pleaded with Ronaldo not to leave the team.[52] Ronaldo chose to stay on at United and signed a new five-year contract months later. [53]

Ronaldo was booed by some French and English fans during Portugal's semi-final defeat against France, and missed out on the tournament's Best Young Player award, partly due to an e-mail campaign against him by England fans.[54] Though the online vote only affected the nomination process, FIFA Technical Study Group awarded the honours to Germany's Lukas Podolski, citing Ronaldo's behaviour as a factor.[55]


International goals
# Date Venue Opponent Score Result Competition
01. 12 June 2004 Estádio do Dragão, Porto, Portugal Greece 1 – 2 1 – 2 Euro 2004
02. 30 June 2004 Estádio José Alvalade, Lisbon, Portugal Netherlands 2 – 0 2 – 1 Euro 2004
03. 4 September 2004 Skonto stadions, Riga, Latvia Latvia 0 – 1 0 – 2 World Cup 2006 Qualifying
04. 8 September 2004 Estádio Dr. Magalhães Pessoa, Leiria, Portugal Estonia 1 – 0 4 – 0 World Cup 2006 Qualifying
05. 13 October 2004 Estádio José Alvalade, Lisbon, Portugal Russia 2 – 0 7 – 1 World Cup 2006 Qualifying
06. 13 October 2004 Estádio José Alvalade, Lisbon, Portugal Russia 4 – 0 7 – 1 World Cup 2006 Qualifying
07. 17 November 2004 Stade Josy Barthel, Luxemburg City, Luxembourg Luxembourg 0 – 2 0 – 5 World Cup 2006 Qualifying
08. 4 June 2005 Estádio da Luz, Lisbon, Portugal Slovakia 2 – 0 2 – 0 World Cup 2006 Qualifying
09. 8 June 2005 A. Le Coq Arena, Tallinn, Estonia Estonia 0 – 1 0 – 1 World Cup 2006 Qualifying
10. 1 March 2006 LTU Arena, Düsseldorf, Germany Saudi Arabia 0 – 1 0 – 3 Friendly
11. 1 March 2006 LTU Arena, Düsseldorf, Germany Saudi Arabia 0 – 3 0 – 3 Friendly
12. 17 June 2006 Waldstadion, Frankfurt, Germany Iran 2 – 0 2 – 0 World Cup 2006
13. 7 October 2006 Estádio do Bessa, Porto, Portugal Azerbaijan 1 – 0 3 – 0 Euro 2008 Qualifying
14. 7 October 2006 Estádio do Bessa, Porto, Portugal Azerbaijan 3 – 0 3 – 0 Euro 2008 Qualifying
15. 15 November 2006 Estádio Cidade de Coimbra, Coimbra, Portugal Kazakhstan 2 – 0 3 – 0 Euro 2008 Qualifying
16. 24 March 2007 Estádio José Alvalade, Lisbon, Portugal Belgium 2 – 0 4 – 0 Euro 2008 Qualifying
17. 24 March 2007 Estádio José Alvalade, Lisbon, Portugal Belgium 4 – 0 4 – 0 Euro 2008 Qualifying
18. 22 August 2007 Hanrapetakan Stadium, Yerevan, Armenia Armenia 0 – 1 1 – 1 Euro 2008 Qualifying
19. 8 September 2007 Estádio da Luz, Lisbon, Portugal Poland 2 – 1 2 – 2 Euro 2008 Qualifying
20. 17 October 2007 Almaty Central Stadium, Almaty, Kazakhstan Kazakhstan 0 – 2 1 – 2 Euro 2008 Qualifying


Honours


Team honours with Manchester United
FA Premier League: 2006-2007
FA Premier League: Runner Up: 2005-06
FA Cup: 2004
FA Cup Runners Up: 2005, 2007
Football League Cup: 2006
Community Shield: 2007

Honours with national team
UEFA European Championship 2004: Runner-up

Individual honours and awards
PFA Players' Player of the Year: 2007
PFA Young Player of the Year: 2007
PFA Fans' Player of the Year: 2007
PFA Premiership Team of the Year: 2005-2006, 2006-2007
Barclays Player of the Season: 2006-2007
Football Writers' Association Award: 2007
Barclays Player of the Month: November 2006, December 2006
PFA Fans' Player of the Month: October 2006, February 2007
Portuguese Sports Personality: 2006
Portuguese Footballer of the Year: 2007
Sir Matt Busby Player of the Year: 2006-2007
Manchester United Players' Player of the Year: 2006-2007
FIFPro World XI: 2006-2007
UEFA Team of the Year: 2004, 2007
UEFA European Championship 2004 Team of the Tournament
FIFA World Cup All-Star Team: 2006
European Footballer of the Year - Ballon d'Or
2nd place: 2007
Onze d'Or
2nd place: 2007
FIFA World Player of the Year:
3rd place: 2007
FIFPro Special Young Player of the Year: 2005, 2006

Special achievements
One of only two players to have won both the PFA Players' Player of the Year and PFA Young Player of the Year awards in the same year, the other being Andy Gray in 1977.
Also won the PFA Fans' Player of the Year award, becoming the first player to win all three Professional Footballers Association awards in one season.
Only the third player in Premiership history to win back-to-back Barclays Player of the Month awards, and the first since the 1995-1996 season.
Holds the Premiership record for most goals scored in one season by a midfielder, having scored 17 times during the 2006-2007 Premiership campaign. (Unofficially he has already broken this record since, as of 6th February 2008, Ronaldo has scored 19 times in the 2007-2008 campaign. However, the official total will not be registered until the end of the season.)
One of only two players to feature in the PFA Premiership Team of the Year for both the 2005-2006 and 2006-2007 seasons, the other being Steven Gerrard

Non-hereditary Orders and Titles
Orders and decorations received by Cristiano Ronaldo:

Officer of the Order of Infante D. Henrique (Portugal)
Medal of Merit, Order of the Immaculate Conception of Vila Viçosa (House of Braganza).[56]

Career statistics

All-Time Club Performance Club Season Domestic League Domestic Cups Europe Total
Apps Goals Assts Apps Goals Assts Apps Goals Assts Apps Goals Assts
Sporting Clube de Portugal 2002-03 25 3 - 3 2 - 3 0 0 31 5 -
Total 25 3 - 3 2 - 3 0 0 31 5 -
Manchester United 2003-04 29 4 4 6 2 0 5 0 0 40 6 4
2004-05 33 5 4 9 4 0 8 0 0 50 9 4
2005-06 33 9 6 6 2 1 8 1 0 47 12 7
2006-07 34 17 14 8 3 1 11 3 5 53 23 20
2007-08 20 19 2 3 3 0 5 5 1 28 27 3
Total 149 52 30 32 14 2 37 9 6 218 77 38
Career Totals 174 55 30 35 16 2 40 9 6 249 82 38


Footballer Cristiano Ronaldo says all he wants is a quiet life and enough cash to buy a few candles.

The Man United star - who reportedly invited 5 escort girls to a bash at his £3 million home earlier this month - says he would much rather have a quiet evening in than go on a boozy night out.

'Many people have images of footballers as people who like to go out all the time, spend their money lavishly and like to date many women,' he tells Hello!

'But I don't drink alcohol, I hate smoking and I'm not a big spender. I live in a rural part of Cheshire, where squirrels, birds and cows are my closest neighbours.'

Cristiano, 22, isn't the least bit interested in wild parties around the Jacuzzi.

'Much of time is spent at home, with my friends and family,' he insists. 'I enjoy to be peaceful and often sit by candlelight to relax. Tranquillity is important to me.'


FourFourTwo's 10 Best Players in the World

1. Kaka

2. Cristiano Ronaldo

3. Ronaldinho

4. Thierry Henry

5. Lionel Messi

6. Steven Gerrard

7. Samuel Eto'o

8. Wayne Rooney

9. Gianluigi Buffon

10. Fabio Cannavaro

Who do you rate as the best footballer in the world right now?
Would the dazzling dribbling of Cristiano Ronaldo get your vote, or do you prefer the stunning skills of Milan maestro Kaka?
The latest issue of FourFourTwo magazine gives their rundown of the 100 best players in the world.
Steven Gerrard and Wayne Rooney represent England in the top 10, but the top five is a purely overseas affair.
Do you think there should more Englishmen in the top 10, or are the likes of Ronaldinho, Thierry Henry and Lionel Messi a cut above anything available to Steve McClaren?
Two-time World Player of the Year Ronaldinho gave FourFourTwo his verdict with his club and country team-mates featuring prominently.
The Brazil and Barcelona star selected Camp Nou colleagues Messi, Henry and Deco, compatriot Kaka and Manchester United's Ronaldo.
Newcastle and England striker Michael Owen gave his backing to Gerrard, Henry, Ronaldinho, Kaka and Messi.
And new Liverpool striker Fernando Torres also included his new Anfield team-mate Gerrard and also Kaka, Ronaldinho, Rooney and Henry.
But we want to know what you think, and who you rate as the best player in the world.
Let us have your comments on the list - and your top tens - using the form below.
Rui Costa: Split Ballon d'Or between Kaka, Man Utd's Ronaldo

Benfica veteran Rui Costa believes this year's Ballon d'Or should be split between Cristiano Ronaldo and Kaka.
AC Milan midfield ace Kaka is regarded by many as being favourite for the Player of the Year award and while former Rossoneri star Rui Costa would love to see the Brazilian pick up the trophy, he also wants recognition for fellow Portuguese Ronaldo, the Manchester United winger.

"This year I would split in two the Ballon d'Or and give half to Cristiano Ronaldo and half to Kaka," said Rui Costa.



Ballon d'Or

Since 1956 the bi-weekly (formerly weekly) French magazine France Football awards the "Ballon d'Or" for the best European Footballer of the calendar year. Only players from European clubs are eligible. Until 1994 any player from an European National Team was eligible; since 1995 any player from a European club (regardless of his nationality) is eligible but he must also be part of a preliminary list of 50 players established by France Football.

Voters are journalists - one from each member country of UEFA. Each voter chooses 5 players and points are awarded as follows: 5 points for a first place in a voters' list, 4 points for second, 3 points for third, 2 points for fourth, and 1 point for fifth.

European Footballer of the Year ("Ballon d'Or")

2006 Fabio CANNAVARO (Ita) Real Madrid (Spa)
2005 RONALDINHO (Bra) Barcelona (Spa)
2004 Andriy SHEVCHENKO (Ukr) Milan (Ita)
2003 Pavel NEDVED (Cze) Juventus (Ita)
2002 RONALDO (Bra) Real Madrid (Spa)
2001 Michael OWEN (Eng) Liverpool (Eng)
2000 Luis FIGO (Por) Real Madrid (Spa)
1999 RIVALDO (Bra) Barcelona (Spa)
1998 Zinedine ZIDANE (Fra) Juventus (Ita)
1997 RONALDO (Bra) Internazionale (Ita)
1996 Matthias SAMMER (Ger) Borussia Dortmund (Ger)
1995 George WEAH (Lib) Milan (Ita)
1994 Hristo STOITCHKOV (Bul) Barcelona (Spa)
1993 Roberto BAGGIO (Ita) Juventus (Ita)
1992 Marco VAN BASTEN (Net) Milan (Ita)
1991 Jean-Pierre PAPIN (Fra) Olympique Marseille (Fra)
1990 Lothar MATTHÄUS (Ger) Internazionale (Ita)
1989 Marco VAN BASTEN (Net) Milan (Ita)
1988 Marco VAN BASTEN (Net) Milan (Ita)
1987 Ruud GULLIT (Net) Milan (Ita)
1986 Igor BELANOV (SU) Dynamo Kiev (SU)
1985 Michel PLATINI (Fra) Juventus (Ita)
1984 Michel PLATINI (Fra) Juventus (Ita)
1983 Michel PLATINI (Fra) Juventus (Ita)
1982 Paolo ROSSI (Ita) Juventus (Ita)
1981 Karl-Heinz RUMMENIGGE (Ger) Bayern München (Ger)
1980 Karl-Heinz RUMMENIGGE (Ger) Bayern München (Ger)
1979 Kevin KEEGAN (Eng) Hamburger SV (Ger)
1978 Kevin KEEGAN (Eng) Hamburger SV (Ger)
1977 Alan SIMONSEN (Den) Borussia Mönchengladbach (Ger)
1976 Franz BECKENBAUER (Ger) Bayern München (Ger)
1975 Oleg BLOKHIN (SU) Dynamo Kiev (SU)
1974 Johan CRUIJFF (Net) Barcelona (Spa)
1973 Johan CRUIJFF (Net) Barcelona (Spa)
1972 Franz BECKENBAUER (Ger) Bayern München (Ger)
1971 Johan CRUIJFF (Net) Ajax (Net)
1970 Gerd MÜLLER (Ger) Bayern München (Ger)
1969 Gianni RIVERA (Ita) Milan (Ita)
1968 George BEST (Nil) Manchester United (Eng)
1967 Flórián ALBERT (Hun) Ferencváros (Hun)
1966 Bobby CHARLTON (Eng) Manchester United (Eng)
1965 EUSÉBIO (Por) Benfica (Por)
1964 Denis LAW (Sco) Manchester United (Eng)
1963 Lev YASHIN (SU) Dynamo Moskva (SU)
1962 Josef MASOPUST (Cze) Dukla Praha (Cze)
1961 Omar SIVORI (Ita [*]) Juventus (Ita)
1960 Luis SUÁREZ (Spa) Barcelona (Spa)
1959 Alfredo DI STÉFANO (Spa [*]) Real Madrid (Spa)
1958 Raymond KOPA (Fra) Real Madrid (Spa)
1957 Alfredo DI STÉFANO (Spa [*]) Real Madrid (Spa)
1956 Stanley MATTHEWS (Eng) Blackpool (Eng)



Wins by Club:

Juventus 8 (Platini 3, Sivori, Rossi, Baggio, Zidane, Nedved)
Milan 7 (Van Basten 3, Rivera, Gullit, Weah, Shevchenko)
Barcelona 6 (Cruijff 2, Suárez, Stoitchkov, Rivaldo, Ronaldinho)
Real Madrid 6 (Di Stéfano 2, Kopa, Figo, Ronaldo, Cannavaro)
Bayern München 5 (Beckenbauer 2, Rummenigge 2, Müller)
Manchester United 3 (Law, Charlton, Best)
Dynamo Kiev 2 (Blokhin, Belanov)
Hamburger SV 2 (Keegan)
Internazionale 2 (Matthäus, Ronaldo)
Ajax 1 (Cruijff)
Benfica 1 (Eusébio)
Blackpool 1 (Matthews)
Borussia Dortmund 1 (Sammer)
Borussia MG 1 (Simonsen)
Dukla Praha 1 (Masopust)
Dynamo Moskva 1 (Yashin)
Ferencváros 1 (Albert)
Liverpool 1 (Owen)
Olymp. Marseille 1 (Papin)

Rui Costa: Split Ballon d'Or between Kaka, Man Utd's Ronaldo
Benfica veteran Rui Costa believes this year's Ballon d'Or should be split between Cristiano Ronaldo and Kaka.
AC Milan midfield ace Kaka is regarded by many as being favourite for the Player of the Year award and while former Rossoneri star Rui Costa would love to see the Brazilian pick up the trophy, he also wants recognition for fellow Portuguese Ronaldo, the Manchester United winger.

"This year I would split in two the Ballon d'Or and give half to Cristiano Ronaldo and half to Kaka," said Rui Costa.



Ballon d'Or

Since 1956 the bi-weekly (formerly weekly) French magazine France Football awards the "Ballon d'Or" for the best European Footballer of the calendar year. Only players from European clubs are eligible. Until 1994 any player from an European National Team was eligible; since 1995 any player from a European club (regardless of his nationality) is eligible but he must also be part of a preliminary list of 50 players established by France Football.

Voters are journalists - one from each member country of UEFA. Each voter chooses 5 players and points are awarded as follows: 5 points for a first place in a voters' list, 4 points for second, 3 points for third, 2 points for fourth, and 1 point for fifth.

European Footballer of the Year ("Ballon d'Or")

2006 Fabio CANNAVARO (Ita) Real Madrid (Spa)
2005 RONALDINHO (Bra) Barcelona (Spa)
2004 Andriy SHEVCHENKO (Ukr) Milan (Ita)
2003 Pavel NEDVED (Cze) Juventus (Ita)
2002 RONALDO (Bra) Real Madrid (Spa)
2001 Michael OWEN (Eng) Liverpool (Eng)
2000 Luis FIGO (Por) Real Madrid (Spa)
1999 RIVALDO (Bra) Barcelona (Spa)
1998 Zinedine ZIDANE (Fra) Juventus (Ita)
1997 RONALDO (Bra) Internazionale (Ita)
1996 Matthias SAMMER (Ger) Borussia Dortmund (Ger)
1995 George WEAH (Lib) Milan (Ita)
1994 Hristo STOITCHKOV (Bul) Barcelona (Spa)
1993 Roberto BAGGIO (Ita) Juventus (Ita)
1992 Marco VAN BASTEN (Net) Milan (Ita)
1991 Jean-Pierre PAPIN (Fra) Olympique Marseille (Fra)
1990 Lothar MATTHÄUS (Ger) Internazionale (Ita)
1989 Marco VAN BASTEN (Net) Milan (Ita)
1988 Marco VAN BASTEN (Net) Milan (Ita)
1987 Ruud GULLIT (Net) Milan (Ita)
1986 Igor BELANOV (SU) Dynamo Kiev (SU)
1985 Michel PLATINI (Fra) Juventus (Ita)
1984 Michel PLATINI (Fra) Juventus (Ita)
1983 Michel PLATINI (Fra) Juventus (Ita)
1982 Paolo ROSSI (Ita) Juventus (Ita)
1981 Karl-Heinz RUMMENIGGE (Ger) Bayern München (Ger)
1980 Karl-Heinz RUMMENIGGE (Ger) Bayern München (Ger)
1979 Kevin KEEGAN (Eng) Hamburger SV (Ger)
1978 Kevin KEEGAN (Eng) Hamburger SV (Ger)
1977 Alan SIMONSEN (Den) Borussia Mönchengladbach (Ger)
1976 Franz BECKENBAUER (Ger) Bayern München (Ger)
1975 Oleg BLOKHIN (SU) Dynamo Kiev (SU)
1974 Johan CRUIJFF (Net) Barcelona (Spa)
1973 Johan CRUIJFF (Net) Barcelona (Spa)
1972 Franz BECKENBAUER (Ger) Bayern München (Ger)
1971 Johan CRUIJFF (Net) Ajax (Net)
1970 Gerd MÜLLER (Ger) Bayern München (Ger)
1969 Gianni RIVERA (Ita) Milan (Ita)
1968 George BEST (Nil) Manchester United (Eng)
1967 Flórián ALBERT (Hun) Ferencváros (Hun)
1966 Bobby CHARLTON (Eng) Manchester United (Eng)
1965 EUSÉBIO (Por) Benfica (Por)
1964 Denis LAW (Sco) Manchester United (Eng)
1963 Lev YASHIN (SU) Dynamo Moskva (SU)
1962 Josef MASOPUST (Cze) Dukla Praha (Cze)
1961 Omar SIVORI (Ita [*]) Juventus (Ita)
1960 Luis SUÁREZ (Spa) Barcelona (Spa)
1959 Alfredo DI STÉFANO (Spa [*]) Real Madrid (Spa)
1958 Raymond KOPA (Fra) Real Madrid (Spa)
1957 Alfredo DI STÉFANO (Spa [*]) Real Madrid (Spa)
1956 Stanley MATTHEWS (Eng) Blackpool (Eng)



Wins by Club:

Juventus 8 (Platini 3, Sivori, Rossi, Baggio, Zidane, Nedved)
Milan 7 (Van Basten 3, Rivera, Gullit, Weah, Shevchenko)
Barcelona 6 (Cruijff 2, Suárez, Stoitchkov, Rivaldo, Ronaldinho)
Real Madrid 6 (Di Stéfano 2, Kopa, Figo, Ronaldo, Cannavaro)
Bayern München 5 (Beckenbauer 2, Rummenigge 2, Müller)
Manchester United 3 (Law, Charlton, Best)
Dynamo Kiev 2 (Blokhin, Belanov)
Hamburger SV 2 (Keegan)
Internazionale 2 (Matthäus, Ronaldo)
Ajax 1 (Cruijff)
Benfica 1 (Eusébio)
Blackpool 1 (Matthews)
Borussia Dortmund 1 (Sammer)
Borussia MG 1 (Simonsen)
Dukla Praha 1 (Masopust)
Dynamo Moskva 1 (Yashin)
Ferencváros 1 (Albert)
Liverpool 1 (Owen)
Olymp. Marseille 1 (Papin)

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