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Another golden year for Cristiano Ronaldo at Real Madrid

The Portuguese forward picked up his fourth award to add to an incredibly successful 12 months both personally and collectively. A Champions League, the Euros and 51 goals. New Zealand-Portugal live

Another golden year for Cristiano Ronaldo at Real Madrid

Cristiano Ronaldo has collected his fourth Ballon d'Or after France Football announced that he had beaten rivals Messi and Griezmann to the individual award. This completes an impressive collection for the Portugal star in 2016.

The Real Madrid number seven had tough competition coming into the final weeks ahead of the vote, however, the odds were in his favour with a strong goal-scoring record and, more importantly two of the biggest titles in the bag. And these were achieved with both club and country.

Cristiano has scored 51 goals in this calendar year - 38 for Real Madrid and 13 for Portugal - and won the Champions League and the European Championships. These key factors have helped the world's sports journalists involved in the France Football vote for the man from Funchal. We look back over seven key moments in this golden year. 

March 5: Double-brace against Celta

The Santiago Bernabéu witnessed the only four-goal haul for Cristiano in 2016. It says so much about the player that some are surprised there weren't more. The double brace helped Madrid to a resounding 7-1 win over the team from Vigo in LaLiga.

Cristiano scores one of his four against Celta.
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Cristiano scores one of his four against Celta.Diario AS

April 2: The Camp Nou clincher

The new Madrid with Zidane at the helm faced a baptism of fire as they headed to the home of champions-elect Barcelona. After Gerard Piqué had put his team ahead early in the second half it didn't take Madrid to equalise through Karim Benzema. And cometh the hour, cometh the man. With just five minutes remaining Cristiano notched his 16th goal against the blaugranas and with it won the game.

Cristiano bate a Bravo en el Camp Nou y da la victoria al Real Madrid.
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Cristiano bate a Bravo en el Camp Nou y da la victoria al Real Madrid.Felipe SevillanoDiario AS

April 12: Champions League hat-trick comeback 

Things were not looking good for the Spanish side after a first leg Champions League 2-0 defeat in the Volkswagen-Arena. But the Bernabéu has seen some special nights so a turnaorund was not unthinkable. As it turned out, a hat-trick from their number seven was to save Zidane from an unexpected exit and they were into the semi-finals.

Cristiano celebrates the 3-0 against Wolfsburg
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Cristiano celebrates the 3-0 against WolfsburgFelipe SevillanoDiario AS

May 28: The day of the 'Undécima'

It wasn't his best game in the white of Madrid but he walked away with a Champions League winner's medal, and had certainly played his part getting to Milan. And he did, of course, score the winning penalty against neighbours, Atlético.

Cristiano Ronaldo wins his third Champions League
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Cristiano Ronaldo wins his third Champions LeagueStefano RellandiniReuters

June 22: Saving Portugal from elimination

Portugal were on the verge of going out of the European Championships in France, but thanks to two equalising goals from Cristiano against Hungary the team escaped with a 3-3 draw to finish third in the group and progress to the knockout stage.

Cristiano Ronaldo makes it 2-2 against Hungary
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Cristiano Ronaldo makes it 2-2 against HungaryJason CairnduffReuters

July 10: First Euro glory for Portugal

What could have been his defining moment turned sour after just a few minutes of the final against host nation France. An early injury couldn't be run off and Cristiano was substituted, clearly upset, with only 25 minutes on the clock. But, a heroic performance from his compatriots ensured that their stand-out player so many times in the past would be able to celebrate the win too. A first for his home nation.

Cristiano at the end of the Euros in France
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Cristiano at the end of the Euros in FranceDarren StaplesReuters

November 19: Atlético hat-trick to dent title aspirations

Cristiano had not started the new season in the way we are accustomed to seeing him, wth the summer injury and interrupted preparations taking their toll. But coming to the Calderón, the last time the two neighbours will meet there in the league, allowed Los Blancos star to make a decisive statement as he helped himself to three goals in an impressive win. The following day's headlines were about one thing.

Cristiano after one of his three at the Calderón
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Cristiano after one of his three at the CalderónJesús RubioDiario AS