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REAL MADRID

Five key dates for Cristiano before Ballon d'Or vote

With three and a half months of the year left to play, nothing is yet a formality and there are five key dates left for Ronaldo to reaffirm his candidature for the prize.

Five key dates for Cristiano before Ballon d'Or vote
FERNANDO ZUERAS DIARIO AS

After winning both the Champions League with Real Madrid and the European Championships with Portugal this year, Cristiano has a fifth Ballon d’Or firmly within his grasp.

However, with three and a half months of the year left to play, nothing is yet a formality and there are five key dates left for Ronaldo to reaffirm him maximum candidature for the prize.

Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates with the trophy after the Champions League final soccer match between Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid

Madrid derby and El Clásico

In La Liga, Real Madrid have two stand out clashes before the end of 2016 (votes for the Ballon d’Or usually begin in December): Atlético Madrid at Vicente Calderón on 20 November and Barcelona at Camp Nou on 4 December.

Los Blancos also compete for the World Club Cup Championship on 8 December in Japan, which will present yet another chance for Ronaldo to pick up silverware after also claiming the UEFA Super Cup in August. However, voting by this stage for the Golden Ball will likely have been completed.

World Cup qualifiers 

With national side Portugal, Ronaldo also has the chance to further showcase his leadership and individual quality. Portugal began their World Cup qualifying campaign with a defeat to Russia (2-0) in early September, although Cristiano didn’t participate because of injury. Ronaldo though will be back to captain the European champions in their next three matches, barring another injury, against Andorra (7 October), Feroe Islands (10 October) and Latvia (13 November).