UEFA.com checks out 2018/19 UEFA Men’s Player of the Year award contender Cristiano Ronaldo.
Cristiano Ronaldo is nominated for the UEFA Men’s Player of the Year award©UEFA.com
Cristiano Ronaldo is on the three-man shortlist for the 2018/19 UEFA Men’s Player of the Year award. UEFA.com pores over his outstanding season.
Season in numbers
Achievements: UEFA Nations League winner, UEFA Nations League Finals top goalscorer, Serie A winner, Italian Super Cup winner, Ballon d’Or runner-up.
UEFA Champions League
UEFA.com reporter’s view: Paolo Menicucci
It is no secret that Juventus signed Ronaldo partly to aid their quest for a first UEFA Champions League title since 1996. After a taxing group stage, their star forward moved up the gears in the knockouts. The Bianconeri had a mountain to climb after losing 2-0 at Atlético in their round of 16 first leg, but it was no problem for Ronaldo, whose second leg hat-trick against one of the best defensive sides in the world proved that nothing is beyond him. He also struck in both legs of the quarter-final against Ajax, though it was not enough to reach the last four.
Top three moments
1. Following a summer move from Real Madrid to Juventus, Ronaldo scored twice against Sassuolo in September to reach 400 league goals in his career.
2. With Juventus 2-0 down against Atlético after their UEFA Champions League round of 16 openers, they needed a miracle in the Turin return. Ronaldo provided it, courtesy of a header in each half and a nerveless late penalty.
3. Switzerland were looking the likely winners at 1-1 in their UEFA Nations League semi-final against Portugal. Two unerring right-footed finishes in the final few minutes and Ronaldo had completed a hat-trick to turn the game.
What they say
“In terms of adjectives to describe Ronaldo’s game, I’ve used many. I was his coach in 2003 and I could see where he’d go. He’s a genius. There are genius paintings and sculptures and he’s a football genius!”
Fernando Santos, Portugal coach
“If the best in the world, Cristiano Ronaldo, arrives it means that your level has grown. When he arrived, I was not very happy because I was still an opponent!”
Leonardo Bonucci, Juventus defender (having rejoined shortly after Ronaldo’s arrival)
“Ronaldo is the future of Juventus. He is an extraordinary player who has had a great season and he’ll have a great one next year.”
Massimiliano Allegri, former Juventus coach