Monday, May 5, 2008

that's not to say he's not a prat

Two days ago I watched Cristiano Ronaldo in an interview with FIFA Futbol Mundial. It was one of those where his face was put in extreme close-up and a translator's voice overlaid his vocals [CRon was speaking in Portuguese]. As I looked at him, my mind was drawn to the back page of a recent edition of the Bombay Times, in which readers are breathlessly told about the serious breach in the relationship of John Abraham and Bipasha Basu caused in July last year. Interested readers will, as a function of memory and desire, or Google, be obliged to recall that this was when Bipasha was in Lisbon for a presentation of the Seven Wonders Of The World list and ended up being photographed making out with Cristiano Ronaldo. The black humour at the heart of this is that Bipasha would probably have had difficulty recognising the man were it not for the fact that John, her boyfriend, is that rare specimen of Bombay manhood, a passionate football fan, thanks to whom Bipasha herself has cultivated a love and understanding of the EPL.

Cough. Anyway, John and Bipasha are back together and doing well [no doubt bound together by the thought that John, had he been in Lisbon that night, would probably have taken a chance on snogging CRon himself] and CRon was on my telly being interviewed about elements of his sporting career [on Sporting Lisbon: 'I think a lot of the young guys there look up to me now'; on Man United: 'The team has certainly changed. We're younger and faster now. This is important in football.']. He was smooth, confident and apparently articulate.

The one moment he truly stumbled was upon being asked, "Who are your sporting idols?" and he had a moment of utter blankness, before he recovered and you could see the brains working behind his shining black eyes. "I would say..." he said, and you could see the words Okay wait, there's that guy? The short dumpy one, the one that everyone likes? What's his name? hover about his head before he said, in quiet, satisfied triumph, "...Diego Maradona. I, er, watched a lot of his videos as a child."

He walks in no man's shadow. He can steal Bollywood beauties away from their devoted households, carry off tomato red boots, score rashes of goals, and keep the frosting on his hair intact all the while. There is no equivalent force to CRon in this world. You couldn't put him on a list of the world's 100 most influential people. Like Helen of Troy, he breeds worshipful despair, not inspiration.


ursus arctos said...

So much for Luis Figo's enduring impact on young CRonaldo.

Congratulations on Milan's victory in the Derby. Their signing Flamini and apparently refusing to meet Barca's inflated price tag on Ronaldinho have made the Nerazzuro half (or 60%) of the city even more despondent than the result, as it looks as if some sort of rationality may be returning to Milan's tranfer dealings.

And if Frey is determined to play in the Champions League, things will really start looking bleak.

roswitha said...

I know! Not much hope to be held out for him waking in the middle of the night and going, "Crap, I actually totally forgot my REAL hero!" is there?

Thank you - it's nice to have the winning feeling back after a year and a half of humiliation. Were you at the game? You folk seem to be far more optimistic about Milan's chances than I can be at this point. I can't help but imagine that this weekend was a lull in the proceedings, and before we know it, everything will go back to the way it was, 'dinho will zip by in his SUV and steal everyone's lunch money, and Flamini will suddenly remember that he's already signed with Inter. [...It's so bizarre that that sentence is based in reality.]

Words have failed me on the point of Fiorentina - what a nightmare week. I know the points table is not supposed to lie etc., not even in Serie A, but damn, this is harsh.

ursus arctos said...

Figo will get his revenge when CRonaldo fails to live up to his billing in the Euros, thereby throwing away his Balon d'Or (a process he began by "pulling an Ibra" against Barca in both legs).

It was a "bridge" holiday in Italy (for May 1, which happens to be my birthday, but I am of course a citizen of the one OECD country in which said date is not a holiday). In any case, we went to the Cote d'Azur for the long weekend, thereby missing all of Fiorentina's pain (both Thursday night and yesterday) and the "humiliation" of the Derby. We did, however, get to see OGCN Nice - Olympique Lyon, which provided our son with his first experience of Ligue 1.

As I noted on Spangles' blog, I am convinced that Inter's faux passes are directly connected to the premature appearance of "Inter's 16th Scudetto" merchandise here in Milan. If they don't pull their fingers out against Siena, it will all be destined for Burmese cyclone victims.

Milan having a rational transfer policy really troubles me. If they sign Frey, I am going to be seriously perturbed.

A. said...

Is it wrong to wish this guy ill luck (on the pitch at least)?

He really gets on my nerves and has done so since the WC where he decided that to pass was an act below his (self)perceived stature .

roswitha said...

@ Ursus: A marvellous celebration; belated happy birthday! Did Ursus Jr take to either/both teams and the atmosphere at large?

"I am convinced that Inter's faux passes are directly connected to the premature appearance of "Inter's 16th Scudetto" merchandise here in Milan."

Surely not. What about that Liverpool ATHENS 07 victory bus uncovered by some intrepid Toffees, which made no difference whatsoever to...oh.

@ A. I think for me his [few] failings on the pitch are always counteracted by how hard he seems to work, legs blurring, tomato red flashes now here now there on the pitch - to an exhausting degree. I know, though, it doesn't make him more likeable. In fact, the cruel impulse to slap someone and his appearance on the telly have been simultaneously occurring phenomena in my own experience.

A. said...

Yes effort but he's seems to do it for selfish reasons. As ursus says, he's also deluded himself into thinking that even Figo is below stature of an idol of CR and is comparing himself to Maradona now.

I'm not convinced. Outside the top 4 or 5, Premier League teams don't know how to defend. He's record against those teams is nothing great. Plus deflections are credited as goals to the shooter, unlike some other leagues.

I'm sure he can't score so many goals in other leagues but I want to see how he plays against better defences. Let's see what he does at the Euros.

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