Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the greatest players to have graced the game of football, in any era.
He is often considered the complete player, with strength, pace, vision, control and an excellent shot, and consequently, the prospect of a new player who can display all of these attributes is an exciting one.
However, at first the Portuguese winger was considered rather weak, and coupled with a penchant for showboating and diving, this meant that some thought he had the wrong temperament for success at the highest level.
This all changed though, probably thanks to Sir Alex Ferguson, who convinced Ronaldo to change his attitude and bulk up, transforming him into the scourge of defences that we see now at Real Madrid.
But which player will step up to fill the gap when Ronaldo declines? Here we look at four players who have the potential to do just that.
The 'Welsh Wizard' is perhaps already the player who is closest to matching the levels achieved by Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, and, at only 24, has room for plenty more improvement.
In scoring 30 goals in 53 games, Bale showed the consistency that is the hallmark of the greatest players, and, unlike some players, performed best under pressure, with last minute winners against Lyon, Sunderland and West Ham as well as winning goals in countless other matches.
If he continues to improve, Bale will become a true great.
Having just joined Barcelona for almost £50m, Neymar's talent is clear to see. Many people consider him to be the most naturally gifted player in the world, and if he can maximise that talent with hard work, Neymar could become the greatest player of all time.
His stunning performances in Brazil's victorious Confederations Cup campaign showed that he is ready to perform on the biggest stage, and succeed in the Champions League. In his incredible dribbling control, there are clear parallels with the young Ronaldo at Sporting Lisbon and Manchester United.
Neymar, arguably, has greater potential than Ronaldo at the same age.
While clearly operating at a level below Bale or Neymar, Eden Hazard is still probably the most skilful player in the Premier League, which coupled with his explosive pace and formidable shot means he is already a superb player, with bags of potential.
In common with Lionel Messi, the Belgian winger has a very low centre of gravity allowing him to waltz past defenders. If Hazard can bulk up a bit, and improve his all-round game, he can undergo a similar transformation to Ronaldo at Manchester United.
The youngest player on the list at just 18, the Sporting Lisbon player is featured more for potential than for achievement so far, although he did finish as the top scorer in the recent U20 World Cup with five goals from four games.
Many managers and players in the Portuguese Primeira Liga have compared him to Ronaldo, and he looks set to join Chelsea for a fee of over €15m in the next week or so.
Obviously at such an early stage, the development of a player cannot be accurately predicted, but he does seem to have a bright future ahead of him.
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