Cristiano Ronaldo the heir to Alfredo di Stefano after Club World Cup win

Cristiano Ronaldo kisses the 2017 FIFA Club World Cup Silver Ball after Real Madrid's victory in the the FIFA Club World Cup final in Abu Dhabi. (AFP)
Updated 17 December 2017
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Cristiano Ronaldo the heir to Alfredo di Stefano after Club World Cup win

ABU DHABI: Cristiano Ronaldo insisted he wants to finish his playing career at Real Madrid after making more history with the goal that saw the Spanish giants crowned world champions.
Ronaldo scored the only goal of the Club World Cup final against Gremio on Saturday to win the tournament for the fourth time and become the all-time top scorer in the competition with seven goals.
“I would really like to, but things don’t depend on me. What depends on me is what I do on the pitch,” said Ronaldo, when asked if he planned to retire at Madrid.
“I am not the one who runs the club, that is for those in charge.
“My job is on the pitch and I think I am doing it well, the rest I can’t control.”
Ronaldo, 32, signed a new deal to 2021 with the club just over a year ago, but sparked speculation over his future after leading Madrid to the Champions League in June due to his apparent discontent with the club’s lack of involvement in a tax case brought against him by Spanish prosecutors.
The Portuguese appeared in court in July over accusations he evaded 14.7 million euros ($17.3 million) worth of tax between 2011 and 2014.
“Obviously, but at the right moment,” said Real coach Zinedine Zidane when asked if Ronaldo should be rewarded with another new contract.
“For us it is fundamental Cristiano stays. He is at his club, his home and no one can do what he keeps doing, so hopefully he stays here until he retires.”
Ronaldo has smashed Real’s club records since joining from Manchester United in 2009 and is way out in front as Madrid’s all-time top scorer with 434 goals in 414 appearances.
He also picked up his fifth Ballon d’Or to match Barcelona rival Lionel Messi’s record mark earlier this month and Madrid president Florentino Perez hailed Ronaldo as the heir to club legend Alfredo di Stefano, who lead Real to win the first five European Cups.
“He is the best without doubt. Not just for his talent or his technique but his ambition, his effort, his leadership, it is difficult to find players like Cristiano,” Perez told Real Madrid TV.
“I watched Alfredo di Stefano from when I was a kid, he is the successor to him. This is a different Madrid, but Cristiano has marked an era.”
Ronaldo claimed he was the best player in history after picking up his latest Ballon d’Or and backed up that bold statement when asked about comparisons to Di Stefano.
“I don’t have to keep speaking constantly about myself, I continue to believe what I said two weeks ago at the Ballon d’Or,” he said.
“I am a very confident person and the numbers don’t lie. The numbers speak for themselves.
“I am very happy, I remain very motivated to keep winning things at a collective and individual level. I still feel strong enough continue my trajectory as a player and to win trophies which is what I like most.”
— AFP


Saudi Arabia club Al-Nassr sign Peru World Cup defender

Updated 41 min 15 sec ago
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Saudi Arabia club Al-Nassr sign Peru World Cup defender

  • Christian Ramos has signed a contract until 2022
  • He becomes second Peru star to join a Saudi Pro League team this week

LONDON: Al-Nassr have followed up the headline-grabbing signing of Nordin Amrabat by landing Peru international defender Christian Ramos.
Jose Daniel Carreno’s side finished third last season and they signalled their ambition to challenge the top two by recruiting Amrabat, the Moroccan World Cup winger, from Premier League club Watford this week.
Not content with that, they have recruited another World Cup player by luring Ramos, 29, to the Kingdom.
He played every minute of Peru’s World Cup group games against France, Denmark and Australia and has won 69 caps for his country.
The 6ft central defender has played all over South America during an 11-year career and has now decided the time is right to switch continents and play in the Middle East.
He becomes the second Peruvian to move to the Saudi Pro League this week, following on from Andre Carrillo’s loan move to Al-Hilal.