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Why Ronaldo is the best athletic footballer in the world

Cristiano Ronaldo
© Selecao Portugal

Many players have been spoken about as great, but Cristiano Ronaldo has proven himself to be one of the greatest players of all time.

Ronaldo arrived at Manchester United in 2003 after just 25 senior games for Sporting Lisbon for a fee of over £12 million. While at Manchester United, he played 196 games and scored 84 goals before making a record breaking £80 million move to Real Madrid in 2009.

His time at Real Madrid, scoring 311 goals in 292 games, helped move him to being considered one of the greatest ever. An amazing nine years in the Spanish capital saw him become one of the most recognisable players in the world. He is so popular amongst fans that he is the most followed footballers on Instagram where each marketing post he makes for a variety of different companies earns him more than $2 million.

Ronaldo is the highest goal scorer in European Championships with eleven, he is also the first player to score at five different European Championships and in eleven consecutive international tournaments for Portugal.

In October 2022 Ronaldo scored his 700th club goal in a 2-1 victory over Everton in the Premier League. He is the highest club level goal scorer in recorded history.

His mental toughness has ensured he has been able to overcome any difficulties which he has come up against, as well as remain calm and composed with so much pressure on his shoulders.

Expectation has always been high on Ronaldo as a leader, at club and international level. His ability to remain cool under pressure and professional attitude is like a professional poker player, you can try to emulate these traits in free online poker when playing a variety of different variants.

Not only this, Ronaldo is a big fan of poker and regularly donates his winnings to charities.

These traits make him a desirable player to partner with for companies around the world. He is a role model to many, and his physical athleticism is so impressive, and he promotes the importance of health and fitness regularly.

While the debates over who is the better player, Ronaldo or Lionel Messi, the physical athleticism isn’t a contest. Ronaldo is one of the most impressive physical athletes to ever play the game.

When Ronaldo signed for Juventus as a 33-year-old in 2018, his medical report stated he had just 7% body fat, which was around three percent less than an average professional footballer. His muscle mass was also measured at 50% with again in more than the average professional football, this time by four percent.

He has been an incredibly quick sprinter. At the World Cup in Russia, he reached a top speed in game of 21.1mph at his fastest while being 33 at the time. The only player to have equalled this was Ante Rebić who was nine years younger than Ronaldo at the time.


As an athlete, the fuel Ronaldo feeds himself are key to his ability to remain in peak conditions, even while often being the most senior player on the pitch.

Ronaldo adapts his diet to ensure the best processing of energy to perform in games and in training. Rather than eating the standard three meals of breakfast, lunch and dinner; Ronaldo breaks up his meals into six sittings.

By eating smaller sittings more often, this ensures Ronaldo is able to keep himself continually energised and at able to train at maximum effort throughout the day.

He has a strict diet, including not consuming alcohol as well as sugary drinks. He was seen not wanting to have Coca Cola products in front of him during a press conference at the European Championships in 2021.


Cardio and weights training are both key parts of Ronaldo’s training regime.

Ronaldo will work out five-days a week preparing his body for the rigours of playing football at the highest level.

He follows a strict routine covering different areas of the body in each session in his weight training.

From the cardio side he includes a plenty of high-intensity exercises to replicate the sprinting conditions he is in at the highest level of the game.

The Portuguese star is also known to complete sit-ups before and after sleeping to ensure his core is at peak condition, even on rest days.


Ensuring his sleep schedule is monitored is vital in order to make sure his body recovery is completed ready for the next day.

He doesn’t follow the need for eight-hours a night in one go. He follows a regime of five shorter sleeps per day which last 90 minutes each.

He has worked with Nick Littlehayes who is a respected sports sleep coach who broke down the best wat for Ronaldo as an individual to get sleep to benefit his body.

There are many reasons why Ronaldo is one of the greatest players to ever play the game, but the commitment and determination he has to remain fit and healthy is unrivalled.