Cristiano Ronaldo has issued a warning to opposing defenses, stating that he sees himself continuing to play professionally for another four to five years.
The 36-year-old, who turns 37 on February 5, has 19 goals in 26 games for Manchester United and Portugal this season, demonstrating that he has not lost his penchant for scoring goals.
On Monday night, at FIFA’s The Best awards presentation, Ronaldo received the Special Award for his goalscoring exploits with Portugal, where he has amassed an astonishing 115 goals.
In another defining highlight of his spectacular career, the forward eclipsed Ali Daei’s tally (109 goals for Iran) in September 2021.
And when questioned about his future, Ronaldo indicated that he does not want to retire from football until he reaches his forties.
‘When people ask me how many more years I intend to play, I respond that I aim to play four or five more. It’s all mental,’ he explained.
‘I retain a passion for the game and the desire to score goals. I’ve been involved in football since I was five years old. My motivation is still there when I get to the pitch, even during training. Even though I’ll be 37 in a few months, I’m feeling fine.
‘I continue to work diligently. I adore the game and am passionate about it. I would want to continue. I aim to play for at least four or five years; everything is mental. If you treat your body well, it will repay you when you are in need.’
Ronaldo will go down in history as one of the greatest players of all time, having won several titles with Manchester United, Real Madrid, and Juventus. There are five Champions League trophies, seven league crowns, six domestic cups, and five Ballon d’Or awards.
And when asked what he attributes his two-decade-long success to, Ronaldo boiled it down to one thing.
‘You must make sacrifices because without them, you would achieve nothing,’ he added.
‘I began playing at the highest level at the age of 18 and have remained there for 15-16 years.
‘It is my commitment, my passion, and my aim to work diligently at all times.
‘This is why I am still the world’s best in terms of performance, trophies, goals, and records. I intend to continue.’