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‘I feel proud to still compete at highest level’: Ronaldo plays down retirement plans

New Delhi, May 17: Portugal and Al-Nassr star striker Cristiano Ronaldo has played down his retirement plans saying he is still competitive at the highest level.

The 39-year-old is the highest goal-scorer in the international circuit with 128 goals and remains very electric on the field. In his debut season for Saudi franchise Al-Nassr, the striker has netted 48 goals across competitions.

Refuting his near-future retirement plans, Ronaldo expressed his desire to continue his career in the game.

“I feel proud to have this age and still compete at the highest level. It’s great and it gives me motivation to carry on. If you look at my career for the last 20 years, my level is high. If you are top for 20 years, it’s unbelievable. I do that and I continue to do that. For me it’s a big achievement,” quoted him as saying on the Whoop podcast.

With 891 goals to his name, Ronaldo has the potential to take his goal tally to 1,000 to become the first player in the history of football to achieve the feat.

Ronaldo said that he has to push himself to remain at this level after lifting league titles in England, Spain, and Italy in addition to five Champions League triumphs.

“My biggest motivation is to carry on. It’s not easy to be at this level. To still push, to still motivate, to carry on, to score goals, to be in good shape, to compete with the young lions that are coming and that when they play against me, they want to show me that they are stronger and faster than me. You have to prepare very well not just physically but mentally, too. This is the challenge,” he said.

Ronaldo has the opportunity to add more silverware to his cabinet with the club and country as well in 2024 as Al-Nassr have qualified for the King Cup of Champions final while Portugal are hoping for another shot at continental triumph in this summer’s European Championship.

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