After the news of Gareth Bale’s mammoth new contract, of course Cristiano Ronaldo was going to do him one better and sign a new deal that sees him remain as the club’s top earner.
Ronaldo’s new deal was announced on Monday with the legendary Portuguese attacker putting pen to paper to a five-year contract worth approximately £365,000 per week. The contract ties Ronaldo to Madrid until he’s 36 years old, but what comes after that?
Ronaldo directly addressed his future during the contract presentation, during which footage of his original presentation in 2009 was shown, as well as highlights from his best goals for the club:
This is a special day for me, extending my links with this club, the club of my heart. Renewing for five years is very special and let it be clear that this is not the last contract. I want to keep making history and I'm sure that in the next five years I will keep scoring goals and winning trophies with the best club in the world. I want to finish my career at this club but I want this to be my penultimate contract.
It’s likely Ronaldo will stay at Madrid until the end of his current contract. Even though he’ll have lost a step physically, he’s still undeniably one of the world’s very best, and, barring any serious injury, he’ll likely remain in peak condition for at least a few more years.
A second contract with Madrid may not be on the cards though. By the time his contract expires, Ronaldo will be 36. While he takes care of his body religiously and hasn’t suffered any serious injury to take years off his legs, it’s tough to believe he’ll be able to not only continue at Real Madrid’s level at that age, but be in a position to sign a whole new contract at the club at 36. Of course, there’s always 40-year-old Francesco Totti’s lead to follow.
If not Madrid though, what’s next for Ronaldo? MLS will always be a tasty destination, and a 36-year-old Ronaldo would still probably be one of the league’s best additions in years. Ronaldo’s profile is massive across the world though, and a move to China or Qatar would likely prove incredibly lucrative for the Portuguese.
It’s impossible to say where Ronaldo’s future lies. But for the next five years, he’s tied to Madrid. We’ll just have to see what comes next.
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