At the time, Cristiano Ronaldo’s decision to leave Real Madrid for Juventus made little sense.
The Portuguese superstar made football look easy at the Bernabeu. He was Real Madrid’s all-time leading goalscorer and had just helped Los Blancos win their third Champions League title in as many years.
But at the age of 33, he felt the time was right to test himself in a new league. He wanted different challenges after nine years in Madrid and subsequently took the courageous decision to leave Spain for Italy.
It was a decision that had the potential to backfire on Ronaldo, who struggled to score goals during his first few matches with the Old Lady.
However, once he netted his first there was no stopping the five-time Ballon d’Or winner. With 14 matches left to play, Ronaldo is currently the leading scorer in Serie A with 19 goals to his name.
He’s scored another two goals in cup competitions - taking his tally to 21 goals in 32 games - and is likely to finish the season with another league title as Juve currently sit 13 points clear of second-placed Napoli at the top of Serie A.
Ronaldo has also assisted eight more goals to his teammates this term, meaning he’s directly participated in 55 per cent of Juve’s goals so far this season - an impressive statistic.
Spanish newspaper Marca have published some other stats which show just how big an impact Ronaldo has made on the Juventus brand - and well as on Italian football as a whole - during his first seven months in Turin.
Following Ronaldo’s arrival, the first-team kit sold out in just one month, while Adidas have reported a boost in Juventus shirt sales in Spain.
Juve have also hugely benefitted from Ronaldo’s presence on social media, growing by a massive 30 per cent and increasing the number of followers to 16 million users in the process.
Their Instagram account also grew by 10 million followers, while online video views received a 136 per cent boost.
Their Twitter account experienced an increase of 10.73 per cent (more than 600,000 users), while three million people joined their Facebook page, taking the number of followers on that platform close to 37 million.
Ronaldo’s impact stretches beyond Juventus, too.
Marca reveal the overall number of fans in Serie A increased by 2.30 per cent, while Juventus’ attendance has gone up by 4.54 per cent.
On the other hand, the average attendance at the Bernabeu has decreased from 65,027 to 62,340.
Whether this is because Ronaldo is no longer there is unclear, although you suspect it has been a factor behind the sudden dip.
Juventus paid £100 million for Ronaldo, but it’s fair to say he’s justifying that eye-watering transfer fee both on and off the pitch.News Now - Sport News