Juventus star Cristiano Ronaldo tells France Football that he is working hard to “stay young” at 34 and warns "talent is useless without hard work."
The Portuguese superstar is in his second season as a Bianconeri and has already bagged four goals in Serie A this term. He admits that he is thinking about his age, but nowhere near resting on his laurels.
“My goal is to stay young as I get older, to stay competitive,” Ronaldo said to France Football. “How many players at my age will find themselves where I am, in a squad like Juventus?
“At the age of 19 to 20 years old, I understood that football was a matter of numbers, titles, records and goals.”
Even after the move away from Spain and Real Madrid, Ronaldo can’t really escape the comparisons to the Barcelona talisman Lionel Messi, but admits he felt the Argentine’s presence in a different way whilst playing in the same league as his biggest individual rival.
“To be head to head with Messi in Spain allowed us to become greater, more effective… At Real I felt his presence more than I did in Manchester, so it gave me a bit more pressure. From one point of view, it was a healthy rivalry."
Ronaldo has proven what might be achieved by hard work and continues to stress that success doesn’t come from talent alone.
“The right ingredients to become a great football player are first, the talent. Without that, you can’t do much. Then, the talent is useless without hard work. Nothing falls from the skies. I would never have arrived where I am without the hard work,” added the five time Ballon d’Or winner.
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