Cristiano Ronaldo
August 17, 2003 11:14 PM   Subscribe

Too Much, Too Young Or Too Good To Be True? Fingers crossed! Cristiano Ronaldo is a charming and talented 18-year-old Portuguese football player, from a very poor family, who has just been bought by Manchester United for almost 20 million dollars/euros, a record amount. Given the No.7 shirt previously worn by the likes of George Best, Eric Cantona and David Beckham, his first game at Old Trafford has earned him rave reviews in the British press. Forgetting the football for a moment, how difficult is it for a teenager to deal with expectations this high and success this early in career and life?
posted by MiguelCardoso (24 comments total)
betty ford is ready when he is.
posted by quonsar at 11:18 PM on August 17, 2003

Ask 13-year-old Freddy Abu.
posted by Ufez Jones at 11:22 PM on August 17, 2003

Or, um, Freddie Adu. You know, whichever...
posted by Ufez Jones at 11:23 PM on August 17, 2003

We can't have two Ronaldos, can we? He needs to find a new name. He should just use his first name. Portuguese and Brasilian footballers are supposed to only have one name, right?
posted by MiG at 11:59 PM on August 17, 2003

how difficult is it for a teenager to deal with expectations this high and success this early in career and life?
I was going to launch into a detailed first-hand account of just how difficult this is. However, once I remembered that my life has been a series of disappointments and failures, I realised that I had no way of doing so.
posted by dg at 12:06 AM on August 18, 2003

I'm not sure, but I think that there have been at least a few 18-year-old NBA players, all heralded as the next big thing and paid lots of money. I think that they've ended up being rather unimpressive, but I won't swear to it.

Then there's always child actors...
posted by jaek at 12:09 AM on August 18, 2003

'Forgetting the football for a moment'

How can you possibly start talking about football and then ask us to stop talking about football. It's the first games of the new season! ...and I for one welcome our new Chelsea overlords. (First time Liverpool have lost at home on opening day since 1962 and won me a fiver too... sweet.) oh and welcome to the Premiership Wolverhampton Wanderers...heh heh)
posted by Frasermoo at 1:09 AM on August 18, 2003

Why, that Kobe Bryant feller was drafted into the NBA at 18, and he seems like a fine upstanding young man. No problem!

then again, Wayne Gretzky was 18 when he played his first NHL game, and has yet to have a tabloid-sized scandal...
posted by arto at 1:30 AM on August 18, 2003

He looked so nice against Bolton on Saturday. At his age and with the depth of talent United have, he's not going to be playing every game, and may well be used as a substitute for most of this season, just as he was on Saturday. He does look skinny and he is going to get picked on by opponents who will put him down if he gets too clever. Injury has to be a worry. But he's going to be a treat to watch. With Zola's magic gone back to Caligiari, Beckham in Madrid, and Ronadinho opting for Barca, the more of that the better...

Beckham and Giggs were both first-team regulars at United at 18/19. Michael Owen was scoring for Liverpool and 17 and scored the greatest goal I've ever seen for England at 18. If Ronaldo has got the ability to be *this* good, this early, the temperament often comes with it in sports.
posted by humuhumu at 2:21 AM on August 18, 2003

We can't have two Ronaldos, can we?
Apparently, he was named after Ronald Reagan.

BTW, the footbal season started last week...
posted by i_cola at 2:30 AM on August 18, 2003

I shouldn't comment on this as I loathe Manchester United with every ounce of my being, but I hope for his sake that he keeps his head on his shoulders and doesn't believe everything that the biased press in this country (England) says about him. How biased? Well, if the old drunk had signed me, the press would be calling me the next George Best/David Beckham, and I'm 36, fat and unfit.
posted by ninthart at 3:46 AM on August 18, 2003

Oh, please... the press biased towards United? They take any opportunity they can get to damn the club. You constantly read that Forlan can't score, Ferdinand only plays well for England, Giggs is past his best, Ferguson is blind to misdeeds by his players, Keane is no longer the player he was, they were lucky to get what they did for Beckham, etc etc... I'm no United fan, but they get no easy ride. The press go immediately overboard about anyone who looks good, especially if they've that slinky style of Ronaldo's.
posted by humuhumu at 3:58 AM on August 18, 2003

good post migs , ronaldo looks a very exciting player and i'm delighted the ghost of beckham has been exorcised so quickly.
good to see man u so motivated at the start of a season , one of the effects of selling beckham i think. Also chelsea's high spending may have concentrated minds.

anyway , celtic for the champions league !
posted by sgt.serenity at 4:49 AM on August 18, 2003

You constantly read that Forlan can't score

yeah those damn tabloids don't know what they're talking about do they? har har. at least he looks pretty.
posted by carfilhiot at 7:16 AM on August 18, 2003

::Chanting loudly with the rest of the mefi footie fans, sloshing boddingtons everywhere::

"Who's that team they call United ?
Who's that team we all adore ?
It's the boys in red and white
and they fight with all their might
cos United are the team that we adore

Bring on Sunderland and Arsenal
Bring on Spaniards by the score
Barcelona, Real Madrid
they would make a gallant bid
but United are the team that we adore


posted by jopreacher at 7:22 AM on August 18, 2003

You know, I feel really sorry for Madonna as well. She has all that fame is loved by many, but I think deep down inside she's really lonely. She has such a huge fortune, but I think it cannot fill that empty spot in her heart. In fact, I feel sorry for all millionaires, especially for any teen idol who suddenly comes into fortune based on uproven talents. It must be really hard for them. With all that money in the way, how can they possibly get the help they need to deal with all the pressure? I only hope that I, living within the privilege of relative poverty, can live my life with the degree of integrity that these young foxes will require to obtain some measure of meaning from their lives. I salute them. We should start some kind of fund...
posted by troybob at 7:52 AM on August 18, 2003

humuhumu: Well, you must be reading different papers, listening to different radio stations and watching different TV to the rest of us. The Media in the UK are so far up Manure's backside, they have a lovely brown tinge to their noses.

jopreacher: time for your medication, dearie...
posted by ninthart at 7:59 AM on August 18, 2003

Did you see Fergie at Ronaldo's press conference? I am sure he was sozzled.
posted by Frasermoo at 8:49 AM on August 18, 2003

Did you see Fergie at [insert any occasion, ranging from an early breakfast to the training ground to the middle of a match]? I am sure he was sozzled.
posted by humuhumu at 8:54 AM on August 18, 2003

jopreacher: Drinking Boddies and'supporting' the scum? Is some kind of parody going on here?!?
posted by i_cola at 9:12 AM on August 18, 2003

I thought this was going to be a thread about The Specials =\
posted by SiW at 2:05 PM on August 18, 2003

I think its about soccer.
posted by pemulis at 7:02 PM on August 18, 2003

You will have to forgive me. I like boddies. I like Man U. I am a rude American who likes footie.

Sue me.
posted by jopreacher at 6:29 AM on August 19, 2003

If the kid has got his head screwed on he should be alright. Giggs was the subject of massive publicity when he broke through, but his club basically refused any access to the media so he was pretty much left alone. No one could have had more pressure than Beckham but he seems pretty well rounded. Way back when, Ray Wilkins was a teenage superstar but has turned out a very mellow middle aged chap, before him it was superboy Trevor Francis, but he appears never to have had a personality to screw up, so he doesn't count.

High profile casualties of fame such as Best, Gascoigne and Hudson were probably prone to screwing up anyway,particularly Gascoigne.

As long as he doesn't fall out with Fergie, in which case he will be fed to the lions, he should be OK.
posted by Fat Buddha at 11:48 AM on August 19, 2003

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