Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo has revealed that “when I retire, I want to try making films” but insists he has a lot more to give in football.
Ronaldo won the fifth Ballon d’Or of his career earlier in the month, but the Portuguese turns 33 in February and has launched an extensive business empire off the pitch.
“A lot of clubs were interested in me,” he told Juventus icon Alessandro Del Piero in an interview for Sky Sport Italia.
“The key man has always been Jorge Mendes, though. He gave me the right direction. Of course, I remember there was talk of Juventus and I was happy, because it’s an extraordinary club.
“But there was also talk of Real Madrid, Manchester United and many other clubs. The club that offered me the best conditions was Manchester, since I was a kid my dream had been to play in the Premier League, I liked it a lot more than Serie A.
“Manchester United gave me that opportunity, above all thanks to Sir Alex Ferguson, and obviously Jorge helped me to get there.
“For now I’m focused on the pitch. I know the time will come for me to leave it behind, but until then I want to enjoy the moment, which is good. Very good.
“I know that when I retire, I’ll have a good life. I’m not saying that because I’ll have a lot of money but because I’ll try new things.
“For example, I want to try making films. I also have my companies: my hotels, gyms, Nike clothing line…
“I want to learn how to become a businessman. I started planning my future at 27-28 years of age, which is a long time ago now.
“I have a very good team behind me. I have many people who work for my companies, and they’ve helped me build some interesting projects.
“When I play football, everything depends on me, but it also depends on these people, who work for me.
“Key to my success? Motivation. If you’re motivated, everything becomes easier. You [Del Piero] know that, you were also a player.
“In this sport, you have to work hard. Your ambition, your passion… you have to gather many things.
“I still feel a lot of passion for football, I love winning and I feel I can achieve more each year.
“People talk about my age, but sometimes I don’t agree with them. Many younger players suffer injuries because they don’t take care of their bodies.
“I’m 32, almost 33. I’m no longer a child, I know that, but I feel strong and motivated. In my mind, I keep sensing my strength and that makes the difference for me.”