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Why Cristiano Ronaldo has still not retired from professional football – report

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(Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)

At 39, Cristiano Ronaldo continues to defy expectations and play at the highest levels of football. Known as a record-breaking machine since his early days, Ronaldo recently set another milestone by becoming the first player to participate in six European Championships with Portugal. Despite his age, the legendary forward shows no signs of slowing down, and his future in the sport remains uncertain. However, two significant challenges could shape the remainder of his illustrious career.

One of these challenges is inspired by Ildefons Lima, a former Andorran footballer known for his impressive longevity in the game. Lima, who played for clubs like Rayo Vallecano, holds the record for the longest international career, having represented Andorra for 26 years, from the age of 17 to 44. To match or surpass Lima’s record, Ronaldo would need to remain active with the Portuguese national team for another five seasons, participating in another World Cup and another European Championship. This feat would solidify his status as one of the most enduring athletes in football history.

Another motivation driving Ronaldo is the prospect of sharing the pitch with his son, Cristiano Ronaldo Jr. Adrian Mutu, a former Romanian striker, revealed in an interview with IAM Sports (h/t TYC Sports) that Ronaldo is extending his career with the goal of playing alongside his son in a professional match. Junior, as he is affectionately known, currently plays in the youth team of Al-Nassr, following in his father’s footsteps through the youth systems of Real Madrid, Juventus, Manchester United, and now Al-Nassr in Saudi Arabia. At 14, Junior is inching closer to a potential debut in professional football, and Ronaldo is determined to witness and share that moment with him.

Cristiano Ronaldo aspires to play with Junior according to Mutu (Photo by Denis Doyle – UEFA/UEFA via Getty Images)

“That’s his real motivation. The fact that he wants to play an official game with his son and that’s why he doesn’t give up,” Mutu stated on the IAM SPORT podcast.

Ronaldo’s career has been defined by an insatiable hunger for success and an unparalleled work ethic. Since his debut for Sporting CP in 2002, he has shattered numerous records, including becoming the all-time top scorer for Real Madrid and the UEFA Champions League. His achievements have earned him five Ballon d’Or awards, cementing his legacy as one of the greatest footballers of all time.

Beyond his individual accolades, Ronaldo’s impact on the game extends to his leadership and influence on and off the pitch. He has been a pivotal figure for Portugal, leading the national team to victory in the 2016 European Championship and the 2019 UEFA Nations League. His dedication to maintaining peak physical condition and his relentless pursuit of excellence have set a benchmark for aspiring athletes worldwide.

As Ronaldo continues his journey in football, his commitment to breaking new ground and inspiring future generations remains unwavering. Whether it is by surpassing Lima’s record for international longevity or sharing a professional match with his son, Ronaldo’s ambitions highlight his enduring passion for the sport. His ability to maintain top-level performance at 39 is a testament to his exceptional talent, discipline, and resilience.

In a career that has already achieved so much, the next few years hold the promise of even more remarkable milestones for Cristiano Ronaldo. His story is not just one of unparalleled success but also of a relentless pursuit of dreams, no matter how ambitious they may be. As fans and admirers, we can only watch in awe as Ronaldo continues to redefine the limits of possibility in football.

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