Ronaldo caps ‘dream year’ after Madrid contract extension
Life in Madrid certainly seems to agree with Cristiano Ronaldo.
The Portugal forward signed a five-year contract extension with Real Madrid yesterday, capping an exceptional year after triumphs with his club in the Champions League and with his national team in the European Championship.
“This is the best moment in my life,” Ronaldo said. “After winning the Champions with Madrid, the Euro with Portugal and now having my contract extended, it’s a dream year. This is too special. Life is good, I’m telling you.”
Wearing jeans, a black jacket and glasses, Ronaldo signed the new five-year contract alongside club president Florentino Perez, then was given a Madrid jersey with the number 2021 on the back.
The deal keeps Ronaldo tied to Madrid until June 2021, when he will be 36 years old. His previous contract would have ended in 2018.
“It’s not my last contract, let’s make it clear,” he said with a smile.
The three-time world player of the year is Madrid’s all-time leading scorer with 372 goals in 360 matches. He has scored more than 50 goals in the last six seasons and is two short of becoming the first player to score 100 goals in European competitions. Ronaldo led Madrid to two Champions League titles and to a Spanish league title, among other trophies.
“I’m not going to lie, I didn’t expect to have these great numbers by now,” Ronaldo said. “I want to keep making history and giving my best with this jersey. I want to keep doing what I have been doing, scoring goals and helping this club win trophies.”
He feels the numbers should be enough to give him a fourth player of the year award, but said “it’s not up to me to vote, so I’m not worried with that.”
Ronaldo arrived in Madrid from Manchester United in 2009. He will have played 12 seasons with the Spanish powerhouse if he stays through the end of the new contract.
“Ronaldo has become an icon for this club, the symbol of the best club in the history of football,” Perez said. “There is no doubt that there will be a ‘before Ronaldo’ and an ‘after Ronaldo’ for Real Madrid.”
Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo, right, poses with Real Madrid President Florentino Perez after signing a new contract yesterday Photo: AP