After his transfer to Al-Nassr in Saudi Arabia in January this year, Cristiano Ronaldo’s career seemed destined to quietly fade into the background, far from the European football spotlight. However, to assume that Ronaldo would exit the stage discreetly would be a grave oversight.
Throughout his illustrious career, the Portuguese legend has consistently defied the odds and silenced his critics, making this a defining trait of his character. Even at the age of 38, he remains true to his intrinsic nature.
In the realm of football, the Ballon d’Or stands as the ultimate individual accolade, and Ronaldo undeniably ranks among the greatest footballers in history. The question arises: could he, once more, lay his hands on the prestigious Ballon d’Or trophy before retiring?
While this might initially appear as a far-fetched idea, the reality is that it is well within his grasp. Ronaldo’s enduring skill and determination make this a genuine possibility. His unwavering commitment to excellence continues to inspire fans worldwide and keeps the dream of another Ballon d’Or title alive.
Sports Brief analyses four reasons why Ronaldo might contend for the Ballon d’Or in 2024.
AFC Champions League top scorer
Cristiano Ronaldo currently holds the position of the top goal scorer in the ongoing Saudi Pro League season. This league has seen a remarkable rise in prominence, now standing as the most prestigious and star-studded football league in all of Asia, largely attributed to the influx of high-profile players this summer.
The teams competing in the Pro League have solidified their reputation as some of the most formidable contenders in this season’s AFC Champions League, as reported by Sportskeeda.
If Ronaldo maintains his exceptional goal-scoring performance, he is well on his way to becoming a strong contender for the title of the top scorer in this season’s AFC Champions League. This achievement would significantly enhance his prospects of securing a place on the Ballon d’Or podium in the upcoming year.
Saudi Pro League champions
Despite Cristiano Ronaldo’s remarkable performance during the latter part of the 2022-23 season, Al-Nassr narrowly missed out on capturing the Saudi Pro League title, ultimately securing the second position in the standings. They finished five points behind the champions, Al-Ittihad, as reported by Reuters.
However, in the wake of their recovery from the disappointments of the previous season, Al-Nassr has embarked on a promising start to the new campaign. After nine league matches, they currently hold the third spot in the league standings, trailing the top position by a mere four points. Notably, Ronaldo has been the standout performer, leading the charts as the top scorer in the Saudi Pro League this season, with an impressive tally of 10 goals.
Should he maintain this level of goal-scoring prowess and lead Al-Nassr to a league title, it would significantly bolster his prospects of securing a sixth Ballon d’Or award.
Euro 2024 champions
Ronaldo has successfully found the back of the net nine times and provided an assist in seven Euro qualifiers this year. His scoring prowess remains at its peak, and he is expected to lead Portugal’s offensive line in the forthcoming competition scheduled for next year.
If Portugal manages to clinch the title in the 2024 Euros, it would mark a significant addition to Ronaldo’s trophy cabinet. Moreover, if his individual achievements align with this team success, he could firmly establish himself as a formidable candidate for the Ballon d’Or award.
Euro 2024 Golden Boot winner
This accomplishment could mark another substantial milestone, significantly bolstering Ronaldo’s chances in the forthcoming Ballon d’Or competition. Given his current outstanding performance, it appears quite feasible that Ronaldo could emerge as the top goal scorer at Euro 2024.
Portugal, widely acknowledged as one of the early favorites, is expected to make a strong impression throughout the tournament. If Ronaldo manages to secure the Golden Boot in this prestigious competition, it would unquestionably position him as a prominent candidate for the Ballon d’Or award.