Portugal captain Cristiano Ronaldo says he aims to live up to the honour and responsibility of having the airport on his home island of Madeira renamed after him. It is now known as the Aeroporto Cristiano Ronaldo. However, what was supposed to be a moment of honour and delight for the Portuguese superstar.
This honour was presented to Ronaldo by Portugal’s president and prime minister at a ceremony on Wednesday.
Although there has been some criticism of the idea from both locals on the island and politicians on Portugal’s mainland, Portuguese President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa and Prime Minister Antonio Costa both attended the ceremony, which included the unveiling of a plaque featuring the airport’s new name and a bust of the player’s head.
I don't know what you're talking about guys, I think the Ronaldo statue looks pretty good pic.twitter.com/JIUwQBuqUY
— keewa (@keewa) March 29, 2017
“Thank you for being here in my honour,” Ronaldo is quoted by O Jogo as saying at the event. “To see my name given to this airport is something very special, everyone knows that I am proud of my land and my country.
Even “I thank a lot the president of the regional government, who had the courage and strength to do this. My friend Miguel Albuquerque, I never asked for this, but I am very happy and honoured to be the part of this moment.
“I know that there were some people who did not agree, but I am not a hypocrite and I accept that some of those are here at this moment. That is all OK, we are all free, we live in a democracy and everyone has the right to their own opinion. I always prefer for those who have a position to say it openly, and not hide behind someone who speaks for them.
“I know the responsibility I have. I will always try to dignify Portugal and especially Madeira with dedication and a spirit of sacrifice and passion.”
Ronaldo was born in Funchal in Madeira in 1985, and moved to Lisbon aged 12 to continue his football education at Sporting Lisbon, before going on to great success at Manchester United and Madrid, while making a record 138 appearances for Portugal and scoring a record 71 goals.
Amazing Records Of Cristiano Ronaldo:
|Spanish League BBVA||14||12||2|
|UEFA Champions League||6||2||4|
|Copa del Rey||1||0||0|
|Super Cup/Club World Cup||2||4||0|
Ronaldo has also received a number of prestigious personal awards from the island’s authorities, including the “Medalla de Merito de la Asamblea Legislativa,” the region’s highest honour.