The battle between Ronaldo and Messi has also been pushed up a new ladder during this time. Both broke a series of new steps in football history. From the number of goals, to the collective title and finally to the number of Golden Balls.
Ronaldo has it all at Real, from fame, to the number one star in football, to an unending battle with Messi, the perfect catalyst for the hyperbole of the Portuguese superstar.
What is Ronaldo at Juventus? It is the leadership of the leadership, the respect of the fans and the respect of both opponents. Juve or Italy too “good” with Ronaldo. That backfired on this big ego star.
Ronaldo does not lack money, but he lacks an opponent that will compare with him every day to push himself beyond the limits. Messi and Barca have always done that for nearly 10 years of the peak of Ronaldo’s career at Real Madrid.
Juventus with a unique position in Serie A does not have that. The defeat in the Champions League quarter-final of 2018/19 against Ajax is a testament to Ronaldo’s inability to drag the rest of the army to Juve’s aspiration to the peak of Europe.
They need a real counterweight in the domestic arena to motivate themselves, and push Ronaldo to create miracles, just like Messi and Barca have done.
Can Ronaldo get up after failure?
Without Ronaldo, Real Madrid lost to Barca 1-5 in the first El Clasico match of last season, fired two coaches after only nine months, went blank in all competitions and had to ask for help from Zinedine Zidane.
But similar to the story of the cup, Ronaldo himself was heavily influenced by leaving Real Madrid. He is no longer backed by the utopia of Los Blancos and accepts the pervasive Italians, thereby losing the edge in flashy races like the Golden Ball.
16 months after apart, Ronaldo and Real Madrid have ever realized that they both need each other to oppose Barca with Lionel Messi? That question will permanently have no answer. In football, few people like to talk about the past if they want to rise.
With Ronaldo’s personality, today’s defeat to Messi could be the stepping stone for a race to the Golden Ball 2020 starting tomorrow. The fondness of that CR7 has always helped him overcome difficulties from being a small boy to Lisbon to study football to the days of consecutive defeat against Messi and Barca at Real.