The former Brazil star is set to announce his retirement on Monday, and to mark the occasion, Goal.com’s Stefan Coerts has put together a timeline of some of the significant moments of his career.
Name: Ronaldo Luiz Nazario de Lima
Date Of Birth: September 18, 1976
Place Of Birth: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Clubs: Cruzeiro, PSV, Barcelona, Inter, Real Madrid, Milan, Corinthians
International: Brazil (1994-2006)
Timeline Of Playing Career:
1993: Makes Cruzeiro debut and scores first goal as a professional football player.
1994: Makes Brazil debut in international friendly against Argentina.
1994: Part of the Brazil squad that wins the 1994 World Cup.
1994: Signs a contract with Eredivisie giants PSV.
1995: Finishes the season as Eredivisie top scorer with 30 goals.
1996: Wins KNVB Beker with PSV.
1996: Leaves PSV for Spanish powerhouse Barcelona.
1996: Wins FIFA World Player of the Year award; runner-up for Ballon d'Or.
1997: Wins Copa del Rey and Cup Winners' Cup with Barcelona.
1997: Finishes the season as La Liga top scorer with 34 goals.
1997: Wins European Golden Boot
1997: Joins Italian titans Inter.
1997: Wins FIFA World Player of the Year award; wins Ballon d'Or.
1997: Wins the Copa America with Brazil.
1998: Wins UEFA Cup with Inter.
1998: Part of the Brazil squad that finishes runners-up at the 1998 World Cup.
1998: Wins Golden Ball at 1998 World Cup.
1999: Wins the Copa America with Brazil.
1999: Sustains first serious knee injury.
2000: Picks up yet another serious knee problem.
2002: Part of the Brazil squad that wins the 2002 World Cup.
2002: Finishes the 2002 World Cup as top scorer with eight goals.
2002: Wins FIFA World Player of the Year award; wins Ballon d'Or.
2002: Leaves Inter to return to Spain with Real Madrid.
2002: Wins Intercontinental Cup with Real Madrid.
2003: Wins La Liga with Real Madrid.
2004: Finishes the season as La Liga top scorer with 24 goals.
2006: Part of the Brazil squad that reaches the quarter-finals at the 2006 World Cup.
2007: Wins La Liga with Real Madrid.
2007: Leaves Real Madrid to join Milan.
2008: Sustains his third serious knee injury.
2009: Leaves Europe to return to Brazil at Corinthians.
2009: Wins Campeonato Paulista and Copa do Brasil with Corinthians.
2010: Voted Player of the Decade by Goal.com.
2011: Retires from professional football.
Other Interesting Facts:
- Ronaldo supported Flamengo as a youngster, but was turned down by the Mengao before signing with Cruzeiro.
- 1994 World Cup winner Romario was the one who advised Ronaldo to kick-start his European career in The Netherlands with PSV.
- Ronaldo is the all-time World Cup top goal scorer with 15 goals.
- Since 2005, Ronaldo has been the co-owner of A1 Team Brazil, along with Brazilian motorsports legend Emerson Fittipaldi.
- Ronaldo has scored for both Milan and Inter in the Derby della Madonnina.