It isn’t hyperbole to say that Ronaldo is one of the greatest players to have ever played the game.
Whilst Cristiano is on his way to being included in that argument, I of course mean Brazilian Ronaldo. And back in 2003 we experience first hand what he was capable of.
In the Champions League semi final that season he astounded us with a masterful hat trick before being substituted off, soaking up the applause of all 66,708 people in attendance.
In a long career filled with highs, it is a moment that has stuck with o Fenômeno as he told Gary Lineker as the two discussed the road to the Olympics for the BBC:
“Well I have incredible memories of England, I think the English fans are the most supportive in the world.
“I had a fantastic experience at Old Trafford, I scored 3 goals and the whole stadium applauded me when I was substituted.
“You can see the English fans know how to admire, respect and recognise a player that has performed well on the pitch.
“In Brazil that never happened to me, nor in Italy and in Spain it never happened.”