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Cristiano Ronaldo

Portuguese and Manchester United's young sensation Cristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro was born February 5, 1985 in Funchal the capital of the island of Madeira in Portugal. Maria Dolores dos Santos Aveiro and Jose Diniz Aveiro were Cristiano Ronaldo's parents. He has three siblings. The name Ronaldo is not very common in Portugal. His father choose it in honor of Ronald Reagan, his favorite actor!

Although not much is known about his private life, he was granted compassionate leave in September 2005 when his father, Dinis Aveiro, died. Most of the fan sites claim there is no girlfriend claiming the attentions of this attractive footballer, but he currently dates TV presenter Merche Romero. He drives a silver Porsche, but that doesn't interfere with him acting as a spokesperson for Suzuki cars. One fan site reports that his favorite meal is Bacalhau à Brás - Portuguese Scrambled Eggs with Salt Cod and Potatoes.

He began his career in Portugal at Nacional before moving to the Super Liga team, Sporting Lisbon. He holds a record at Sporting as the only footballer to play for the Under-18, Under-21, B team, and first team all in one season. His debut match for the Portuguese powerhouse team came at the young age of seventeen in September 2002.

His performance on the soccer field drew attention from international premiership teams. Liverpool considered him as a recruit, but decided to wait until he was more seasoned. Manchester United stepped in and signed the young star in the summer of 2003 for £12.24 million (approximately $22 million US)...and the rest is history. He was named FIFPro Special Young Player of the Year 2005, the only award to be voted for by fans. He also ranked 20th in the FIFA Player of the Year (2005) standings.

Ronaldo will play a key part in Portugal's 2006 World Cup bid, where he will link up with legends such as Luís Figo, and other bright stars such as Anderson Deco and Pauleta. Team Portugal's coach Luiz Felipe Scolari remarked about the young footballer, "Cristiano has everything needed to be one of the stars of the World Cup. He's got so much quality about him, a good turn of pace and a decent shot among other things. If all goes well, he'll probably be one of the big names of the tournament."

The BBC says. "Present star man: Manchester United winger Cristiano Ronaldo is the heir apparent to Figo. With his dazzling feet and blinding skills he has the ability to illuminate the finals. "

Even if you only play computer soccer, you'll recognize Cristiano Ronaldo as the star on the cover of the PlayStation and Nintendo game FIFA Street 2.

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