Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo celebrated his 36th birthday last Friday, and he took the opportunity to open up about how it feels to be the highest scoring player in football history with 763 goals.
Ronaldo achieved the amazing feat just a few days ago, as he scored a brace against Inter Milan in the semi-finals of the Coppa Italia. In a rare moment of vulnerability, Ronaldo took to his Instagram to share an emotional message.
"36 years old, unbelievable! It feels like it all started yesterday, but this journey is already full of adventures and stories to remember by. My first ball, my first team, my first goal... Time flies!," he said.
Indeed, time has flown for the Portuguese superstar, who started his career as a professional 20 years ago with Sporting CP. He has since played for Manchester United, Real Madrid and Juventus FC, some of the most prestigious football clubs in the world.
"From Madeira to Lisbon, from Lisbon to Manchester, from Manchester to Madrid, from Madrid to Turim [sic], but above all, from the bottom of my heart to the world... I've given everything I could, I never held back and I've always tried to deliver the best possible version of me. In return, you gave me your love and admiration, your presence and your unconditional support. And for that, I'll never be able to thank you enough. I couldn't have done without you," he said.
The photo that came with the message is a casual evening at home with his partner, Georgina Rodriguez, along with their four young children. The happy family is seen gathered around a cake decorated in the Portugal colours and topped with candles in the shape of the number "36."
"As I celebrate my 36th birthday and my 20th year as a professional footballer, I'm sorry that I can't promise you 20 more years of this. But what I can promise you, is that as long as I keep going, you'll never receive less than 100% from me!," he continued. Of course, playing in the top level at the age of 36 is rare, but more and more players are pushing the limit.
Ronaldo has proven that he still has a lot to give, given the vital role that he still plays both for Juventus and the Portuguese national team.