Mbappe, Haaland and the Top 8 Players Who Idolise Cristiano Ronaldo

Mbappe, Haaland and the Top 8 Players Who Idolise Cristiano Ronaldo

Isaac Darko
updated at March 20, 2024 at 9:22 PM
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  • Cristiano Ronaldo's universal appeal is undeniable, even captivating opposition players
  • Despite crossing the age of 35, Ronaldo's influence in the sport remains undiminished
  • The Portuguese is regarded by numerous stars as one of football's all-time greats

Cristiano Ronaldo is undoubtedly among the most exceptional footballers in history.

The iconic Portuguese striker has been awarded five Ballon d’Or accolades throughout his illustrious career, displaying an extraordinary goal-scoring prowess while securing numerous titles with prominent clubs in England, Spain, and Italy.

Additionally, he played a pivotal role in Portugal's triumph in Euro 2016.

Vinicius Junior, Kylian Mbappe, Harry Kane
Vinicius, Mbappe and Kane headline the list of footballers who hold Cristiano Ronaldo in high esteem. Credit: @ghanaballers
Source: Twitter

Ronaldo's relentless commitment and unwavering dedication to his craft have earned him immense praise and respect, as he has fully maximized his potential.

The seven-time Ballon d'Or winner stands as a footballing inspiration and idol to countless aspiring players worldwide.

As Ronaldo nears the conclusion of his illustrious career, his influence continues to resonate with several of today's footballing superstars.

8. Matthijs de Ligt

In his childhood days, Matthijs de Ligt would often imitate Ronaldo while playing football with his friends in the backyard. The Dutch defender's dream came true in 2019 when he left Ajax for Juventus and became teammates with his idol, Ronaldo.

“We came to the conclusion that I always wanted to be Cristiano Ronaldo when we were playing football in the garden,” De Ligt told Dutch magazine VI, per talkSPORT. “That was especially in his time when he played at Manchester United.

7. Endrick

Endrick, an exceptionally thrilling 17-year-old footballer, is set to emulate Ronaldo's path by joining Real Madrid in 2024.

In an interview with FourFourTwo earlier this year, the talented Brazilian forward expressed his desire to be recognized for his own abilities and unique style.

He stated: "I just want to be Endrick and want to show people Endrick. If there’s anyone who influences me, not because of the teams he played for, the goals he scored or the titles he won, but because of the person he is, it’s Cristiano Ronaldo."

6. Marcus Rashford

A glimpse at Marcus Rashford's free-kick technique is enough to ascertain that the Manchester United forward was undoubtedly influenced by Ronaldo during his upbringing.

“For me there is no bigger inspiration in football," he told Man Utd’s official website in 2018.
"I could speak for a lot of young players and United fans that watched the team when he was here and the majority of us have followed him as he’s moved on in his career and that’s what's special about United.”

5. Harry Kane

While Harry Kane has established himself as a seasoned professional, the Tottenham and England star is eight years Ronaldo's junior and closely observed the world-class forward during his formative teenage years.

“I asked for his shirt,” Kane said after a Champions League clash between Real Madrid and Tottenham in 2017. “He's a big role model of mine, watching him when I was growing up."

4. Rasmus Hojlund

Rasmus Hojlund, a talented player on the cusp of joining Rashford as a teammate at Man Utd, is yet another young forward who was captivated by Ronaldo's goal-scoring prowess while growing up, watching him in action on television.

"My idol is Ronaldo," the Denmark international confessed. "My father introduced me to him in United and I followed him to Real Madrid. I just like his mentality and love that he's so eager to score goals. He's so passionate about wanting to be the best.

3. Vinicius Junior

In March 2020, Ronaldo witnessed Vinicius Jr's goal for Real Madrid against Barcelona at the Bernabeu with a sense of pride. To the delight of his idol, Vinicius Jr replicated Ronaldo's iconic 'Siiiiu!' celebration in a moment of sheer admiration.

After the match, Vinicius Jr took to Instagram to confirm that Ronaldo was, without a doubt, his footballing idol.

2. Erling Haaland

Erling Haaland, the sensational talent from Manchester City, is undeniably one of the most exceptional strikers in the world.

Surprisingly, Haaland revealed that he might not have pursued a footballing career had it not been for the profound influence of Ronaldo.

"I would love to meet him and tell him that I am a footballer thanks to him,” the 23-year-old told reporters in 2020. “For me, he was always a role model.”

1. Kylian Mbappe

Mbappe had a heartwarming interaction with Ronaldo during a UEFA Nations League match between France and Portugal in 2020. At half-time, the two footballing stars shared a delightful moment.

Following the match, Mbappe expressed his admiration for his idol by sending a direct message on Twitter, where he simply wrote "Idol" accompanied by the crown and goat emojis.

As a young and gifted footballer with aspirations of reaching the pinnacle of the sport, Mbappe had posters of Ronaldo adorning his bedroom wall.

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Isaac Darko
Isaac Darko is a La Liga, Ligue 1 and Bundesliga editor at Sports Brief with a Degree in Journalism and Communications from Ghana Institute of Journalism (2010)