LifeBogger presents the Full Story of a Football Legend who is best known by the Nickname; ‘Fenomeno’.
Our version of Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima’s Biography Fact plus his Childhood Story brings you a full account of notable events from his childhood time till date.
The analysis involves his life story before fame, family life and many OFF and ON-Pitch little-known facts about him. So without further ado, let’s begin.
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima Childhood Story -Early Life and Family Background:
For Biography starters, Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima was born on the 18th day of September 1976 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, to his father, Nelio Nazario de Lima, Snr and mother, Sonia dos Santos Barata. Brazilian Ronaldo is the third child of the couple.
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima came from a poor family who struggled to send him to school. He was recognized as a child prodigy in his growing years, mostly in the area of academics.
His progress and good performance at school reached its climax at the age of 11 when the unexpected happened.
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima’s parents, Nélio Nazário de Lima and Sônia dos Santos Barata separated and went their various ways when he was only 11.
Having no one to take care of him, Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima had to drop out of school.
At that time, the only way to earn little monies was to play street soccer competitions. He found love in football in the quest to survive.
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima Family Life:
Did you know?… Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima’s relationship life went public in the year 1997 when he met the Brazilian model and actress Susana Werner, who he admired from a popular Brazilian television soap opera called ‘Malhacao’.
His request to be featured in three episodes was approved. They both fell in love when they met. This prompted a long-term relationship which lasted until the beginning of 1999.
An end to one relationship meant a beginning of another for the striker who finds himself at the top of every ladies’ men’s wish list.
Later that year, Ronaldo fell in love with former female Brazilian footballer Milene Domingues.
It didn’t take time before she got pregnant. Upon observing she was pregnant, Ronaldo took her to the alter.
They both got married in April 1999. On the 6th of April 1999, Milene gave birth to Ronaldo’s first son, Ronald, in Milan.
Their marriage lasted 4 years after which they separated. In 2005, Ronaldo became engaged to Brazilian model and MTV Star Daniela Cicarelli, who became pregnant but suffered a miscarriage.
Their relationship was the shortest. It lasted only three months after their luxurious wedding ceremony, which cost about £700,000.
Ronaldo is Alexander’s Dad:
That same year 2005, Ronaldo performed a paternity test, and he confirmed himself to be the father of a boy named Alexander.
The boy was born after a brief relationship between Ronaldo and Michele Umezu, a Brazilian waitress whom Ronaldo first met in Tokyo in 2002.
Upon discovering that they were legally male, Ronaldo offered them $600 to leave. One of the three, now deceased Andréia Albertini, demanded $30,000. He later exposed the case to the media.
His marriage to Maria Beatriz was cancelled immediately after the scandal. After much clarification on the issue, their relationship resumed. This time, love consumed them.
He goes out with her publicly and gets the whole world to know he would be searching anymore.
On the 24th of December 2008, Maria Beatriz Antony gave birth to their first daughter, Maria Sophia, in Rio de Janeiro.
In April 2009, the whole family moved to a new penthouse in São Paulo. On 6 April 2010, Maria Beatriz Antony gave birth to their second daughter, Maria Alice, in São Paulo.
Coincidentally, Maria Alice was born the same day, exactly ten years after her older brother Ronald was born.
After the confirmation of his fourth child, Ronaldo stated on 6 December 2010 that he had had a vasectomy, to “close the factory”, feeling that having four children was enough.
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima’s Relationship with First Son, Ronald:
They are best of friends. There exist no uncertainties about their masculinity. There exist no array of untapped emotions between Ronaldo (father) and Ronald (Son).
Ronald gets a lot from his dad, especially in the framework of providing, nurturing and guidance.
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima Biography Facts – Early Start to Football:
Barely six months after he took to football, Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima became a regular member of all the football matches that were organized in his local area.
He received full support from his friends and neighbours, who knew his predicaments and wanted him to progress quickly.
This early start to football began in the streets of Bento Ribeiro, a suburb of Rio De Janeiro. It was also a place where his phenomenal rise to the very top of world football began.
Ronaldo utilized all opportunities given to him to showcase his revolutionary street skills on the field.
His hard work paid off as he was spotted by a Brazilian legend, Jairzinho, who at that time was both a football coach and scout.
Upon witnessing his potential, Jairzino recommended the then 16-year-old to his former club Cruzeiro.
In his debut season with the club, Ronaldo broke a record by scoring an astonishing 44 goals in 44 games.
His blistering acceleration, powerful body balance and close control plus technique wowed all football pundits and fans.
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima Biography – Road to Fame Story:
His continued performance helped the club to its first Brazil Cup championship in 1993.
At some point, everyone started calling him the ‘New Pele‘ thanks to his football pattern that resembles that of Pele when he started at the very same age in 1958.
It took little time before Ronaldo gained huge national recognition at the tender age of 17.
Moreso, his performance gave him an automatic ticket to the 1994 world cup, which was held in the United States. Though he watched the competition from the bench as his countrymen won the Cup.
Soon enough, word of Ronaldo’s great talent spread to European shores thanks to his inclusion in Brazil’s 1994 World Cup-winning squad.
He was eventually scouted by the great Piet De Visser, regarded as one of the then-best scouts in football, having previously unearthed Ronaldo’s compatriot Romário.
His performance at the local level won him a transfer to PSV Eindhoven after the World Cup.
Ronaldo accepted because it was (as of then) a tradition for players from Brazil to go to Holland or France to learn the European game before their big move.
Ronaldo hit the ground running when his contract was sold to PSV Eindhoven in the Netherlands in 1994, averaging nearly a goal per game against top-notch European competition. He spent two seasons at PSV Eindhoven, scoring 54 goals in 57 games.
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima-The memorable Year 1996:
It was the summer of 1996. A year where lots of things happened. The year Michael Johnson won double gold at the Atlanta Olympics.
A year England had hosted and almost reached the final of the European Championships.
The year the five bundles of trouble called The Spice Girls were unleashed, telling us what they wanted, what they really really wanted.
A year Hotmail had just been invented. A year the Fugees killed us softly with that song.
This was the year Nelson Mandela stepped down as prime minister of South Africa. A year Prince Charles and Princess Diana were signing divorce papers.
Above all, it was a year the name Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima became a household name that got global attention.
This was the year Barcelona snatched a goofy 19-year-old kid (Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima) from PSV Eindhoven who could score goals for fun.
Mourinho coached him:
It was during this time that Sir Bobby Robson and Jose Mourinho worked with Ronaldo as Barcelona manager and assistant manager.
Thou Ronaldo would only stay with Barcelona for a single season but had a telling impact in his time with the club.
Ronaldo led the club to UEFA Cup Winners’ Cup and Copa del Rey glory.
Though he would only stay with Barcelona for a single season with a telling impact in his time with the club.
He scored 47 goals in 49 games and also became the youngest player to ever win the FIFA world player of the year award, a record that stands to date.
At 20 years old, Ronaldo was displaying a standard of finishing the world had never seen before.
In his words… “I love to score goals after passing all the defenders as well as the keeper. This is not my speciality, but my habit.” – Ronaldo.
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima The Inter Milan Story:
Money was beginning to talk in football in the year 1998. That year, Barcelona accepted a then-world record bid of £18 million from Inter Milan for Ronaldo.
Never one to back down from a challenge, Ronaldo made a move to the Italian giants.
His debut season was typical of what the world had come to expect from its star player – 34 more goals followed, and more records were broken. Can you notice Taribo West in the picture below?
Ronaldo became the first player to ever win back-to-back FIFA World Player of the Year awards while also scooping the prestigious Ballon D’or.
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima 1998 World Cup Finals:
As far as World Cup finals go, the one played out in 1998 between Brazil and France couldn’t have had a better script.
While Brazil was looking to defend the crown they won in 1994, France was playing at home, looking to win the Golden trophy for the first time.
The game also saw two legends take on each other, with Zinedine Zidane overshadowing the Brazilian Ronaldo, who himself was embroiled in a fantastic controversy that left the whole of his fans confused.
Consider this- Ronaldo, Brazil’s golden boy, who was expected to lead the side against a resurgent France, fell sick just hours before the game.
These reports soon made way for new stories that the striker had been suffering from an upset stomach. More excuses were unfolded, ranging from food poisoning to personal problems in his love life.
Eventually, the devastating truth was also revealed by Brazilian team doctor Lidio Toledo: Ronaldo had been rushed to hospital after suffering a convulsion in his sleep the night before the final.
He was dropped from the first team and whisked away to the hospital, only to make a dramatic return to the team minutes before kick-off.
However, there was another twist in the tale.
Instead of heroically leading Brazil to World Cup glory, Ronaldo was unable to shake off his sickness, and a below-par performance from the striker allowed a certain Zinedine Zidane to score twice, leading France to a famous 3-0 win over Brazil.
“We lost the World Cup but I won another cup – my life” – Ronaldo (about the 1998 World Cup Final).
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima Biography – The Injury Story:
Many potentially great footballers have had career-threatening injuries. Michael Owen, someone who was once feared for his lightning pace, faced the same injury as Ronaldo, and he could not return to become half the player he once was.
Paul Gascoigne, Tiger woods, Joe Cole, Gary Neville, and many more athletes have had career-ending injuries and could never return to their best form.
There’s a thin line that separates the great from the rest. It is definitely a hard task to become the best.
What’s harder? To become the best, fall, be written off and then rise to become the best again. This is Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima’s injury story.
1998 WORLD CUP INJURY AND COMEBACK:
He was injured in a collision with French keeper Barthez in the 1998 world cup.
He later took his revenge on Barthez, who had collided into and injured him in the 98 world cup final, with a stunning hat trick away to Manchester United, which earned him a standing ovation from the Old Trafford faithful.
THE 1999/2000 INJURY AND COMEBACK
On November 21st 1999, tragedy struck again, as Ronaldo ruptured a knee tendon while playing in a Serie A clash against Lecce.
After surgery and five months of rehabilitation, the Brazilian made his return in the Coppa Italia final against Lazio.
The hope of a fairytale comeback was shattered after he suffered a second, more serious injury to the same knee after just 7 minutes on the field. He was carried off by a stretcher.
He would not play again until the end of the 2001/2002 season. By implication, he was out for a year. He only appeared for sixteen games and grabbed only seven goals for Inter that season.
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima – Post Inter Milan Era:
After recovering, Ronaldo made enough effort to persuade Brazil manager Luiz Felipe Scolari to include him in his squad for the 2002 World Cup in Japan/Korea.
Having redeveloped his game to replace his reliance on speed and agility, Ronaldo was a different player in his post-injury time. He relied more on strength and an improved eye for goal.
This he acquired through experience. He unveiled his new style of play to devastating effect – guiding Brazil to the final once again and a showdown with Germany.
All the pre-match talk focused on Ronaldo overcoming his demons from 1998 – and overcome them he did.
The Brazilian unveiled his new style in the 2002 world cup to devastating effect, where he guided Brazil towards another world cup final and scored two goals.
He scored eight goals in the tournament and won the MVP. He also won the Fifa world player and Laureus come back of the year award that year.
His performance earned him another world record transfer fee, this time €39 million, as Real Madrid added him to their ever-growing line-up of Galacticos.
Despite being sidelined until midway through October, Real Madrid’s fans welcomed Ronaldo with a heroes reception – chanting his name in matches he did not even attend and breaking records for merchandise sales.
Doing what he had always done best, Ronaldo thanked the fans with 2 goals on his debut. He went on to contribute 30 goals on the way to winning La Liga with Madrid.
Despite a succession of injuries, Ronaldo would go on to score 104 goals in 184 games for Madrid over the course of 5 years at the club.
Post-Madrid Era (Injury Crisis and Comeback):
Ronaldo fell out of favour with Madrid manager Fabio Capello in 2006, and following the signing of Ruud Van Nistelrooy from Manchester United, his days at the Bernabeu were numbered.
On January 27th 2007, Ronaldo signed for AC Milan in a deal worth €7.5 million.
On February 13th 2008, in a league match against Livorno, Ronaldo was stretchered off the field after suffering a ruptured kneecap ligament following an innocuous attempt to win the ball.
It was the third time Ronaldo had suffered such an injury, and not even the famous Milan Fitness Lab held much hope of him ever recovering – Milan did not renew his contract at the end of the season despite scoring eight goals in 20 games.
According to Ronaldo, “My life has always been a series of challenges and I’m psychologically prepared, but this is the biggest challenge of my life.” – Ronaldo
Proving them wrong again:
Out of action for over a year, Ronaldo vowed to prove everyone wrong and return from his third career-threatening injury.
A return to his homeland saw the superstar sign for Corinthians, where he received a heroes welcome upon his unveiling.
Despite being sidelined for 13 months, Ronaldo helped himself to 30 goals. He did that in 55 appearances, helping his team to a league and cup double.
There were also renewed calls for him to be restored to the Brazil squad once again for the 2010 World Cup. This didn’t go through.
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima – Managing the Last World Cup:
The Brazilian Legend played in the 2006 world cup. Despite doubts being raised over his fitness and his weight. He ended up breaking Gerd Muller’s record. By becoming the all time world cup top scorer with 15 goals.
He achieved just this, with a trademark goal against Ghana on June 27th. Grabbing his 15th goal in a World Cup finals tournament. Brazil would go on to be eliminated by France in the quarter-finals.
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima Weight Problems:
Ronaldo struggled with gaining too much weight in the latter part of his career.
Medical examination revealed he has hypothyroidism — an illness that affects the body’s metabolism.
According to Ronaldo, “Upon medical examination, I discovered I was suffering from a complaint called hypothyroidism.
It slows down my metabolism. And to control it, I would have to take some hormones.
A drug that is not permitted in football because of anti-doping (rules).
Am afraid my career has neared its end.”
Ronaldo, however, promised his fans to keep fighting on his weight loss. Thou, He never gave them any assurance. At some point, it got to everyone that all hope was lost after much struggle.
He never worked hard enough to get into shape again.
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima Retirement:
Ronaldo announced his retirement from football on a certain Monday. In what was called an emotional press conference. A conference that brought an end to his 18-year career. Ronaldo finally announced his retirement in February 2011.
According to Ronaldo-
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima – An unfair world (Comparing him with Cristiano Ronaldo):
The first thing that comes to our mind when someone mentions the name Ronaldo is Cristiano Ronaldo, Cr7 or Cr9.
Luis Nazario De Lima Ronaldo is usually referred to as, ‘Fat Ronaldo’, ‘Mota(fat) Ronaldo’, ‘Mottai(bald) Ronaldo’, ‘Weird hair cut ronaldo’, ‘The other Ronaldo’.
Many fans of Ronaldo de Lima genuinely feel heartbroken. When someone as great as him gets reduced to such low levels. And is remembered not for what he has achieved. But for how much he weighs or his hairdo.
This is one of the reasons why LifeBogger has decided to take time. And write the Bio of this Legend who is probably the biggest inspiration for footballers.
Now we ask you, will you remember Ronaldo for his weight or for his goal-scoring rate? Will you remember him for what he did to his hair or what he could do with his feet?
The next time someone says Ronaldo, will you think of the Portuguese winger? Or the Brazilian? “Drop your comment below on this after reading this article”.
Ronaldo Luis Nazario de Lima Biography Rankings:
Many Fans did give up on him prematurely three times already in his career. You now know he takes pleasure in proving his doubters wrong.
In Ronaldo, we have a player who completely redeveloped. He redeveloped his game three times. Injuries got him for a cumulative total of more than 36 months. This is what we think of him in our rankings below.