Cristiano Ronaldo’s move to Real Madrid back in 2009 is undoubtedly one of the biggest in football’s history.
Not only was it for a world record fee but it ushered in a period of success that the club hadn’t seen since the 1950s.
Ronaldo was already one of the world’s best but he kicked things up another gear at the Santiago Bernabeu, regularly setting goal-scoring records and establishing himself as one of the all-time greats.
While he may only have won two La Liga titles in nine seasons at the club, he helped Real to an incredible four Champions League trophies in a five-year spell.
There’s little doubt that, despite the then-record fee, Real got a bargain back in 2009 and one they’ll do well to top.
But then, they clearly knew they’d be signing one of the greats – as proven by an incredible deal struck with Ronaldo back in 2008.
So sure were Real that they’d be signing a superstar that they made sure to guarantee the move a year before it happened.
That’s according to then-Real president Ramon Calderon, who spoke to The Athletic.
“He extended his contract with United [in 2008] but he did it with the commitment to come to Real Madrid the year after – he said, ‘I am going.'”, said Calderon.
“We knew for sure he would be coming, which is why we signed the commitment with a €30 million penalty for both parties.
“This meant that if we didn’t comply with the contract, we would have to pay Cristiano €30 million and vice-versa – he would have to pay us the same if he reneged.
“He was very happy at United. He told me many times that Ferguson was a father to him, how he gave him the chance to become the best player, how he loved the fans but he wanted to change and we started to talk.
“The penalty clause was a way to strengthen the commitment. Ferguson didn’t want to sell but he knew.”
Making that kind of commitment is extraordinary – what if his form had tailed off the next year? What if he picked up a terrible injury? What if Real’s plans changed?
They clearly knew what they were getting and were happy to go all in on it. Safe to say, they don’t regret it.
Single Cristiano Ronaldo Tweet Is Worth USD 868,000.
According to a recent report from social media marketing firm Opendorse, the world’s most valuable Twitter posts from athlete endorsers come from Cristiano Ronaldo, with Virat Kohli making the top five
Cricket is not football, but when you throw in Virat Kohli, the gentleman’s game becomes a veritable sport to ‘follow’, as revealed by social media marketing firm Opendorse. In its “Top 100 Highest-Paid Athlete Endorsers of 2019” report, Opendorse claimed that a single social media post, in this case on Twitter, by India captain is worth USD 350,101, making him one of the most valuable endorsers in the world.
The list is dominated by football superstars, with Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo in the lead (USD 868,606). Surprisingly, former Spain midfielder Andreas Iniesta, who moved to Japan after a successful stint with Barcelona, is second with an estimated value of USD 590,825. Brazil forward Neymar is third on the list with 478,138. Their great rival Lionel Messi is not on Twitter.
And the fourth is basketball great LeBron James with a value of USD 470,356.
23-time Grand Slam winner Serena Williams is the highest-ranked female athlete with a value of USD 115,926.
But in the highest-paid (endorsement) listing, tennis great Roger Federer tops the chart with earnings of USD 86,000,000 last year. He, however, has an estimated value per post of USD $134,544. Tiger Woods is second in the list with earnings of USD 54,000,000. His tweet value USD 69,399. James is third with USD 53,000,000.
Let’s check how much these top five Twitter endorsers are worth and where do they stand in overall earnings:
1) Ronaldo is ranked fourth in earnings (USD 44,000,000); Twitter Followers: 81.8M
Notable Endorsement Deals: Nike | Herbalife | DAZN | EA Sports | American Tourister
2) Iniesta is ranked 57th in earnings (USD 2,500,000); Twitter Followers: 83M
Notable Endorsement Deals: Asics
3) Iniesta is ranked 11th in earnings (USD 30,000,000); Twitter Followers: 45M
Notable Endorsement Deals: QNB | Nike | Gillette | Red Bull | Gaga Milano | Beats | McDonald’s
4) James is ranked 3rd in earnings (USD 53,000,000); Twitter Followers: 44.3M
Notable Endorsement Deals: Nike | Coca-Cola | Beats By Dre | Blaze Pizza | 2K Sports
4) Kohli is ranked 17th in earnings (USD 21,000,000); Twitter Followers: 32.9M
Notable Endorsement Deals: Blue Star | Wellman | Himalaya | Myntra | Google Duo | Mobile Premier League | Puma