Ronaldo: "At Juve I adapted perfectly. They saw there’s nothing false about me"
Ronaldo has spoken to ICON magazine about his adaption to life at Juventus and admitted he is not ruling out a coaching role in the future.
Cristiano Ronaldo has given an interview to Spanish magazine ICON, in which he spoke about his adaption to a new life in Italy following his 117 million euro move to Juventus last summer.
After nine seasons at Real Madrid, where he became the club’s all-time top goal scorer with 450 goals and won four Champions League and two LaLiga titles, the 34-year-old opted for a new challenge in Serie A. And, unsurprisingly, he has adapted quickly to life in Italy, both off the pitch and on it, where he has scored 27 goals in 40 games for Juventus so this season.
Ronaldo spoke candidly to ICON about his adaption at Juventus, where he has continued with the work ethic and attitude that served him so well at Madrid. Slotting straight into the role as a leader at the Italian club, the veteran striker has tried to lead by example.
Ronaldo: “You must be humble, learn that you don’t know everything"
"The first thing I do [when I get to a new club] is be myself and nothing more. My work ethic is always the same. If a business owner arrives and starts to crack down on everyone, people will not see him as a leader. They will say: ‘This is my boss, but he does not treat me well’,” says the five-time Ballon d’Or winner.
“You must be humble, learn that you don’t know everything. If you're smart, you get little things that make you better as an athlete. In Juve I adapted perfectly. They saw that there’s nothing false about me. He is Cristiano and he is what he is because he takes care of himself. It is one thing to speak and another to do. Why did I win five Ballon d’Ors and five Champions?”
Ronaldo: "I've always had that extra pressure"
In the summer of 2009, nine years before his 117-million-euro move to Juventus, the Portuguese superstar joined Real Madrid from Manchester United for a then world-record fee of 96 million euros. Such enormous price-tags naturally put extra pressure and expectations on players. And for 24-year-old Ronaldo, it was no different.
“It's true that I felt pressure from a very young age. When I came to Madrid I was the most expensive player in history," he said. "At Manchester, after winning my first Ballon d’Or at age 23, people were already thinking: ‘Look, this one has to be on top.’ In the last ten, 12 years, I've always had that extra pressure.”
But it is extra pressure that the he has arguably managed with ease throughout his career, as evident by his consistent high-level performances year in, year out.
And as his performance levels have remained constant moving into his mid-30s, it is hard to believe that the 34-year-old is now in the twilight years of his playing career. Although he has said it himself that he could play until he was 40. Nevertheless life after being the one of the world’s greatest-ever footballers will come eventually. Has he thought about coaching?
“I’m not ruling it out,” he told ICON.
(The full Cristiano Ronaldo interview will be published this Saturday in ICON, which is distributed with El País in Spain)