NASL team Fort Lauderdale Strikers presented Brazilian World Cup star Ronaldo to the media in South Florida today as part-owner of the club after his affiliation with the club was originally announced in December.
During the press conference, Ronaldo announced that Nike will be the club’s first sponsor under his part-ownership, a brand that was Ronaldo’s first sponsor when he was a 16-year-old striker.
Ronaldo, who retired from playing in 2011, is only one of three men who has won the FIFA World Player of the Year award three times or more (joining Zinedine Zidane and Leo Messi). Ronaldo has also won the Ballon d’Or twice, as well as winning the World Cup in 1994 and 2002, winning the Golden Ball Award in the 1998 World Cup (where Brazil lost in the final) and scoring his 15th World Cup goal in the 2006 World Cup, which was a World Cup record.
The Brazilian star said he was attracted to investing in the United States due to seeing the growth of the game particularly by the record TV ratings for soccer in the States.
Ronaldo was also asked whether he will try to make a comeback to play for the Strikers.
“To play a soccer game, you have to be in very good shape,” said Ronaldo. “I will try for myself to start another challenge. I’m sure it will help the league, team and soccer in America. I will try. I will train a lot. I will train to play some special matches, if we get in the final game.”
Meanwhile, Fort Lauderdale Strikers Managing Partner Ricardo Geromel discussed plans to build a new stadium in the Fort Lauderdale area, to help grow the Strikers into a greater brand in the area.