Cristiano Ronaldo continues to raise the bar as to what is possible at Real Madrid.
Overhauling Raul’s record will happen in the next couple of games, even though the club have recognised the feat already.
To put it into some sort of perspective, Raul, if he were playing now, could play every game until 2024 and still not have as good a record in terms of goals to games as Ronaldo.
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The numbers are frankly astonishing.
Set against the backdrop of such continued excellence, it’s a mystery as to why Los Blancos have only ended up with one Champions League and one La Liga title in the time that Ronaldo has donned the all-white.
Question marks perhaps remain over his ability to influence the big games, with Lionel Messi continuing to take the plaudits from the biggest names.
What, therefore, does the Portuguese realistically need to do for the uniform acceptance of all and sundry? To stop the perennial “Messi v Ronaldo” argument?
His professionalism shouldn’t even be in question.
Portraying him as some kind of pantomime villain next to boy-next-door Messi is neither helpful nor accurate. Throwing up his arms in disgust at a chance going begging or a team mate beating him to the punch cannot realistically be seen as divisive surely?
When has a centre forward not been selfish? It’s part of a forward’s make up. 14 shots on goal against Malaga show that, despite not scoring on the day, he continues to get into the right positions and do everything possible to ensure that he is preparation for the big moments is correct.
For anyone prepared to continue to disrespect his achievements, the facts speak for themselves.
He has scored more goals in six years than Raul, the biggest of Real club legends, managed in 16. He is the top scorer in European competition ahead of Raul and Messi.
He is the record holder for the most goals in a Champions League season and he has won Europe’s top prize with two of the biggest football institutions in the world in Manchester United and Real.
Isn’t it about time that football connoisseurs learned to appreciate what they see before them?
Once Ronaldo has retired from the game, which in reality could be as quickly as four or five years time, we’re unlikely to ever see his like again.
Supporters will be harking back to the days when the Portuguese strutted and preened about and how they were privileged enough to be in his thrall.
We, as consumers, already look back with fondness to the time when Pele and George Best were in their pomp.
It’s time Ronaldo was afforded similar courtesy.
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