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Cristiano Ronaldo

The Rise And Fall Of Cristiano Ronaldo


Confidence is piercing: It attacks the disposition in those it encounters with a domineering force.

Arrogance is masochistic: It challenges those dispositions to return force in kind plus more. It demands unequal retribution. It bolsters the defending.

Ronaldo has none of the confidence he deserves and too much of the hubris that weighs him down.

Someone needs to reboot him.

His head is nowhere near the pitch. His attacking is indirect. His tantrums are ubiquitous. His emotions run completely unchecked.

Where he once out-smarted most defenders, most now out-muscle him, sending the winger whirling downward again into the whining spirals which mar his ever-declining reputation.

His free-kicks sail well off course. His runs to the byline are rare. The extempore cuts and shifts are gone, the sleight and trickery with them, replaced with forecast, boastful, and inconsequential step-overs before usually passing square or backwards.

John O’ Shea is in the side—presumably—to pass sideways. Ronaldo is not!

The club he led to glory last year needs at least half of his ability and at most half of the immaturity. Its fans, ever scrambling to doggedly defend the reprobate, deserve respite and reassurance. They deserve to see their hero on song, not his villainous alter-ego, always scowling and recalcitrant.

In the last several seasons, he played like a man who knew he’d be great. Then the world agreed and made him great, exalting him PFA Player of the Year, European Player of the Year, and World Player of the Year. But despite capturing all of world football’s individual awards to confirm his self-belief, he now seems somehow not to believe in himself anymore.

The weight of each opposing crowd booing and teasing him might be taking its toll. Maybe Messi or Ribery’s form of late is what causes Ronaldo so much anxiety. Maybe he can’t deal with the pressure of becoming the most recognizable player on the planet. Maybe he just wants people to like him more—who could blame him?

But after six months of his emotional treacle, can no one within the walls of Old Trafford encourage change in the 24-year-old? Can’t Alex Ferguson himself demand it? The Scot never shied from ego-management: Ince, Cantona, Hughes, Beckham—how is Ronaldo less deserving? Why is he immune?

A flying boot would affect him just the same. Ronaldo must’ve seized sizable leverage with his bi-yearly feigns at foraying into Spanish football, because Ferguson is hesitant to ever discipline the boy in his side who needs it the most.

Let Ronaldo watch a game from the stands like he used to when he actually played with some naivete and creativity. Give Tosic a run-out. Hell, give Nani a run-out. Make Ronaldo remember what it’s like to just be a player again.

Perhaps Carlos Quieroz, former United number two and current Portugal manager, can speak with urgency in a language the winger will hear, understand, and adhere to.

Change for the winger Ronaldo is long overdue and must be swift before he completely undermines his stature in the world game that surely could not have peaked already?

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  1. Mike

    March 24, 2009 at 7:43 pm

    This is a stupid article, makes 0 sense.

  2. ibrar

    March 24, 2009 at 6:08 am

    Ronaldo got player of the year? was he? NOOO!

    Ronaldo = most overrated player of the year, no of all time.

    Is he good? Yes. Is he great ? From moment to moment, gerrard, torres and so many
    others deserve his fame, loyal to the club, to the game, and with the heart of a lion,
    not of a girl, dropping moaning and giving a strop to referees.

    ” they dont treat em fair” shutup ronaldo, GROW A PAIR! And show us them few spells
    when you were rated way too much.

  3. tyduffy

    March 23, 2009 at 1:20 am

    gaffer can i write for the blog?

    Arthur, what would you write about? Your comments accuse others of bias, while at the same time employing a handle that has bias written all over it. What exactly is your requirement for writing to your specification? Should everyone who writes for this site give up their club, their passion and what drew them to football in the first place? Or should we just stop writing? If you want dry dispassionate journalism, go read the BBC.

  4. ArthurArseGooner

    March 22, 2009 at 7:03 pm

    gaffer can i write for the blog?

  5. LindaSouthAfricanManUFan

    March 22, 2009 at 5:01 pm

    Ronaldo with his fall down tantrums, the “world owes me” and “I’m doing everyone a favour” attitude should toughen up, suck it up and play the game. Alternatively, bench him until his attitude improves. Talent is nothing if the attitude is wrong.

    At this crucial point in the season, red cards, petulance and tit-for-tatting are just not on. The one who loses his temper loses the game! As we’ve just seen in the games against Liverpool and Fulham, it has a negative effect on the other players as well. Morale is low. Man U just fell apart. Scholes should join a waterpolo team – his ball hand(l)ing skills will impress. Let the the keen gentlemen play – read Tevez, Raphael, Giggs, Evra here – they give it their all! They get knocked down, get up and will die trying. We are behind United all the way but lads, let’s see good, hard fought games without the prima donna acts!

  6. Lud

    March 22, 2009 at 4:34 pm

    I guess your not doing your job unless a deskchair hooligan is raving like a moron in your comments. Why don’t you go bother a french Arsenal fan blog.

  7. ArthurArseGooner

    March 22, 2009 at 4:22 pm


  8. Raatzie

    March 22, 2009 at 3:49 pm

    EPL Talk’s next post:

    Liverpool 5-0 Aston Villa: Horrible refereeing costs Villa three much-deserved points; Liverpool still doomed.


    Post after that:

    Tottenham 1-0 Chelsea. Supurs continue march toward Champions League.

  9. United4life

    March 22, 2009 at 3:11 pm

    ArthurArseGooner, you can stick you f**king Arsenal up your ass. It is time for United to let go of Ronaldo.

  10. Raatzie

    March 22, 2009 at 2:50 pm


  11. ArthurArseGooner

    March 22, 2009 at 1:56 pm


  12. ArthurArseGooner

    March 22, 2009 at 1:55 pm


  13. Dave

    March 22, 2009 at 1:16 pm

    Maybe he’s just trying to save Real Madrid a few million in transfer fees this summer.

  14. Kartik

    March 22, 2009 at 11:43 am

    Ronaldo is an unsporting classless footballer. The worst of the game. It’s a pity that in England, the home virtuous football, the league has been overrun by foreign divers and cheaters like him.

    And if he’s such a great player why in the two biggest games he played as an international, was he so terrible? The 2006 World Cup semifinal against France he was terrible and flopping all over the place, and the 2008 Euro quarters where Germany taught him how REAL FOOTBALL is played.

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