Brazilian great Ronaldo announces retirement

view gallery VIEW GALLERY

Former Real Madrid, Barcelona and Inter Milan striker Ronaldo has announced he will retire from football at the end of next year.

The 33-year-old has signed a new two-year deal at Corinthians which expires on December 31, 2011, after which he will hang up his boots at the end of an illustrious career.

He told a press conference today: "I have extended my contract for another two years and that will be the last of my career.

"I want to give my all, have fun and finish with some major achievements."

Ronaldo, a three-time FIFA World Player of the Year, has suffered from major knee problems in his career while his return to Brazilian football with Corinthians has been blighted by a thigh injury.

Despite that he has great affection for the Sao Paulo outfit and is set to become a club ambassador when he retires.

"The crowd that follow us is very passionate," he added.

"I am increasingly fond of this club. It has been a wonderful chapter of my life here in Sao Paulo."

The player's agent Fabiano Farah said: "Ronaldo will become a representative of Corinthians abroad.

"We will combine his name and the importance it has with the strength of the club."

Ronaldo has won 97 caps for Brazil but he has not ruled out reaching three figures at this summer's World Cup, even though he has not yet received a call-up under former team-mate Dunga.

"About the World Cup, we'll see," he said.

"I still have a chance of going.

"But for 2014 (when Brazil host the tournament), it is impossible. It is a long way off and time is moving on."

Ronaldo started out with Cruzeiro before securing a switch to Dutch club PSV Eindhoven when still a teenager.

He quickly emerged as a huge talent, scoring 42 goals in 45 league games at the Philips Stadion.

At that point, he had become the most coveted young player in Europe and it came as no surprise when Bobby Robson took him to Barcelona.

Ronaldo showed he could handle the pressure of playing for one of the world's top clubs by rattling in 47 goals in 49 games as the Catalans won the European Cup Winners' Cup, the Copa del Rey and the Spanish Super Cup.

Inter Milan was his next destination with the big-spending Italians having to shell out a world-record fee to take him to the San Siro.

He was again a resounding success, helping the Nerazzurri to the UEFA Cup crown.

It was at Inter when he suffered his first serious knee injury, against Lecce in November 1999.

His comeback lasted just seven minutes as he was again struck down by knee problems.

Ronaldo made a successful return at the 2002 World Cup, winning the golden boot as tournament top scorer as Brazil won the trophy in Japan and South Korea.

A move from Inter to Real Madrid followed and he helped Los Merengues win the Primera Division crown in his first season at the Bernabeu.

He maintained his prolific form in goal for Madrid but looked a shadow of the player who had burst on to the scene in the mid 1990s.

Ronaldo moved back to Italy in January 2007 with AC Milan but only made 20 league appearances before joining Corinthians.

Sport
Alexis Sanchez has completed a £35m move to Arsenal, the club have confirmed
sportGunners complete £35m signing of Barcelona forward
Voices
Poor teachers should be fearful of not getting pay rises or losing their job if they fail to perform, Steve Fairclough, headteacher of Abbotsholme School, suggested
voicesChris Sloggett explains why it has become an impossible career path
Sport
world cup 2014
Sport
Ray Whelan was arrested earlier this week
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
In a minor key: Keira Knightley in the lightweight 'Begin Again'
film
Arts and Entertainment
Celebrated children’s author Allan Ahlberg, best known for Each Peach Pear Plum
books
News
peopleIndian actress known as the 'Grand Old Lady of Bollywood' was 102
News
Wayne’s estate faces a claim for alleged copyright breaches
newsJohn Wayne's heirs duke it out with university over use of the late film star's nickname
Life and Style
It beggars belief: the homeless and hungry are weary, tortured, ghosts of people – with bodies contorted by imperceptible pain
lifeRough sleepers exist in every city. Hear the stories of those whose luck has run out
News
Mick Jagger performing at Glastonbury
people
Life and Style
fashionJ Crew introduces triple zero size to meet the Asia market demand
Sport
Santi Cazorla, Mikel Arteta and Mathieu Flamini of Arsenal launch the new Puma Arsenal kits at the Puma Store on Carnaby Street
sportMassive deal worth £150m over the next five years
Arts and Entertainment
Welsh opera singer Katherine Jenkins
musicHolyrood MPs 'staggered' at lack of Scottish artists performing
Life and Style
beautyBelgian fan lands L'Oreal campaign after being spotted at World Cup
Arts and Entertainment
Currently there is nothing to prevent all-male or all-female couples from competing against mixed sex partners at any of the country’s ballroom dancing events
Potential ban on same-sex partners in ballroom dancing competitions amounts to 'illegal discrimination'
News
business
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily World Cup Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting
Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

In the final part of our series, Chris Green arrives in Glasgow - a host city struggling to keep the politics out of its celebration of sport
Out in the cold: A writer spends a night on the streets and hears the stories of the homeless

A writer spends a night on the streets

Rough sleepers - the homeless, the destitute and the drunk - exist in every city. Will Nicoll meets those whose luck has run out
Striking new stations, high-speed links and (whisper it) better services - the UK's railways are entering a new golden age

UK's railways are entering a new golden age

New stations are opening across the country and our railways appear to be entering an era not seen in Britain since the early 1950s
Conchita Wurst becomes a 'bride' on the Paris catwalk - and proves there is life after Eurovision

Conchita becomes a 'bride' on Paris catwalk

Alexander Fury salutes the Eurovision Song Contest winner's latest triumph
Pétanque World Championship in Marseilles hit by

Pétanque 'world cup' hit by death threats

This year's most acrimonious sporting event took place in France, not Brazil. How did pétanque get so passionate?
Whelks are healthy, versatile and sustainable - so why did we stop eating them in the UK?

Why did we stop eating whelks?

Whelks were the Victorian equivalent of the donor kebab and our stocks are abundant. So why do we now export them all to the Far East?
10 best women's sunglasses

In the shade: 10 best women's sunglasses

From luxury bespoke eyewear to fun festival sunnies, we round up the shades to be seen in this summer
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014: Lionel Messi? Javier Mascherano is key for Argentina...

World Cup final: Messi? Mascherano is key for Argentina...

No 10 is always centre of attention but Barça team-mate is just as crucial to finalists’ hopes
Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer knows she needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

18-year-old says this month’s Commonwealth Games are a key staging post in her career before time slips away
The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

The German people demand an end to the fighting
New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
Can scientists save the world's sea life from

Can scientists save our sea life?

By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
Richard III, Trafalgar Studios, review: Martin Freeman gives highly intelligent performance

Richard III review

Martin Freeman’s psychotic monarch is big on mockery but wanting in malice