Cristiano Ronaldo delighted to end 'perfect' year with more silverwear

18 December 2016 03:53

Cristiano Ronaldo hailed "the perfect end" to a stellar 2016 after his hat-trick sealed the Club World Cup title for Real Madrid.

The Portuguese star scored from the penalty spot and twice more in extra-time as LaLiga's leaders finally saw off the challenge of Japanese underdogs Kashima Antlers 4-2 in Yokohama.

For Real, it was a welcome addition to the trophy cabinet that already includes this year's Champions League title, but it is hard to see this as anything other than an extension of Ronaldo's personal annus mirabilis.

As well as his achievements with Real, he also spearheaded Portugal's victory at Euro 2016 and collected his fourth Ballon d'Or award in Paris.

Unsurprisingly, the scale of his success has not been lost on the 31-year-old.

"It has been a dream year, really great," he said, after collecting the Club World Cup's 'golden ball' award.

"It is a week full of great moments after winning the Ballon d'Or and now the Club World Cup, so it really is a perfect end to the year.

"I didn't think it would end like this: winning the final, scoring three goals and helping Real Madrid.

"I'd like to thank my team-mates yet again, because I cannot win individual trophies without them."

"It has been an unforgettable year both for the team and me as an individual. We won the Champions League, the UEFA Super Cup and the Club World Cup. I also won the Euro with Portugal. It was a perfect year. I am very happy to end the year in such a way.

"This is the trophy we really wanted to end the year in the best way possible."

Despite his peerless achievements in 2016 Ronaldo appears to be in a perpetual battle with his detractors, both real and imagined.

And on the occasion of another crowning triumph, he again took aim at his perceived critics.

"Everyone always expects more from Cristiano, I always give my best and if I can't do it it's because I'm unable," he said.

"People often talk too much, but I'm used to that. I show my quality on the pitch and nothing has gone badly. I have kept my level of performance as high as possible over the last 10 years. I want to keep working and enjoy my football, that is what I love the most.

"The statistics don't lie. I am really happy, I've had a great season personally and as part of a team."

Source: PA


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