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Will Cristiano Ronaldo retire?

Cristiano Ronaldo has won just about every major trophy a football player dreams of, but one notable prize has eluded him.Will Cristiano Ronaldo retire? 

The Portugal star is yet to win a World Cup and time is now against the veteran after his country missed out in the 2022 tournament in Qatar.

Ronaldo, however, has enjoyed remarkable longevity having made his health a priority at the outset of his career.

But every great player must hang up the boots at some point and Ronaldo’s retirement could be just around the corner, after the 1-0 quarterfinal defeat to an inspired Morocco.

When will Ronaldo retire? What CR7 has said about retirement date

Will Cristiano Ronaldo retire? after Morocco defeat
After Morocco defeat Will Cristiano Ronaldo retire?

Despite speculation earlier this year that Ronaldo might be close to retiring from football, the former Manchester United player has regularly dismissed such reports.

In September 2022, the star forward in fact declared he hopes to play for Portugal at Euro 2024 after becoming the highest men’s international goal scorer.

“It has been a long road, but I would like to say that my road is not over yet,” Ronaldo said.

“I hope to be part of the [Portugal] Federation for a few more years. I still feel motivated; my ambition is high. I’m in a team with young people.

“I want to be part of this World Cup and the European too; I’m going to assume that right away.”

Ronaldo also addressed his retirement plans in November 2022 in an interview with Piers Morgan.

“I want to play two years more, three years more. So two or three years maximum. I want to finish at 40. I think 40 will be a good age… but I don’t know, I don’t know the future,” he said.

“Sometimes you plan one thing for your life and as I said many times, the life is dynamic and you never know what’s going to happen.”

Cristiano Ronaldo age: Was this his last World Cup?

Aged 37 while competing in the World Cup, Ronaldo’s age suggests he won’t appear at the tournament again following elimination in 2022.

By the time the 2026 World Cup comes around, the Portugal star would be a 41-year-old and even his body would likely struggle to play on at such an age.

Ronaldo said that Portugal were to triumph in Qatar, he would hang up his international boots. “Yes. Retired. 100 per cent,” he said in his interview with Piers Morgan.

But, of course, Portugal came up short.


Ronaldo’s World Cup record

Like fierce rival Lionel Messi — who at age 35 has said the 2022 World Cup will be his last — Ronaldo is yet to hoist the trophy from four previous attempts.

The closest he came was in his first appearance in 2006 when Portugal finished fourth.

Ronaldo has scored at each of the past five World Cups and scored his first hat-trick at the tournament in 2018.

Finish Games Goals
2006 Fourth place 6 1
2010 Round of 16 4 1
2014 Group stage 3 1
2018 Round of 16 4 4
2022 Quarterfinals 5 1

When do players retire? Ronaldinho, Zlatan, other stars

Most footballers generally retire in their mid-30s but retirement ages have been pushed back in recent years.

Goalkeepers typically play on the longest with Gianluigi Buffon still lining up for Parma in Serie B at the age of 44.

Out-field players generally struggle more with wear and tear but Zlatan Ibrahimovic is defying the odds and injuries with AC Milan at the age of 41.

Even more impressive is Kazuyoshi Miura, who is still playing competitively in Japan’s fourth division at the age of 55.

Past stars of the game generally hang up the boots earlier than most would have liked with the Brazilians Ronaldo and Ronaldinho both retiring at the age of 35.

Diego Maradona hung up the boots when he was 37, while Pele also stopped playing as a 37-year-old.

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