He was born to a poor family in a Rio de Janeiro favela in 1976 and discovered his true love as a young child: soccer.
In Spain they called him the Extraterrestrial, in Italy they called him the Phenomenon. The world knew him as the new Pelé. Despite his injuries he went on to be one of the best players of all time, winning three World Player of the Year awards. Two before his 21st birthday.
Now Ronaldo's career might be over. He was injured in September and finally made his latest long awaited comeback last weekend. But, only minutes after coming on as a substitute in AC Milan's win against Livorno his knee buckled again.
Here's hoping you do return to the pitch, oh bucktoothed one. But if you don't, well, thanks for all the memories. Your sublime goals have left millions around the world with their mouths agape in wonder.
Here's a highlight reel via YouTube.