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5 reasons why Cristiano Ronaldo may be past his prime

One of the greatest footballers of our generation has had a woeful start to the new season and we try to analyze why

Top 5 / Top 10 03 Nov 2017, 18:12 IST

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What has happened to Cristiano Ronaldo?

It doesn't take a footballing expert to understand that Cristiano Ronaldo is on the decline. The four-time FIFA Ballon d'Or winner, Cristiano Ronaldo is one of the greatest football players of this generation.

He has scored 616 goals for club and country with 4 UEFA Champions League winners medal. He has won every possible honour in club football and led Portugal to the UEFA Euro title in 2016.

After 15 full seasons with Sporting CP, Manchester United and Real Madrid, Cristiano Ronaldo seems to be slowing down a bit. For the first time in more than 10 years, he is going through a goal drought and his struggles are clearly visible. It is quite natural for any player who played 15 successful seasons at the top-flight to slow down. 

Let's see the 5 reasons why Cristiano Ronaldo is past his prime:

#5 His runs are slowing down and is no more a threat from outside the box

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Ronaldo slows down but still faster than many

Nowadays, we rarely see the Cristiano Ronaldo of old who gets the ball anywhere on the field and just starts racing & dribbling his way past opponents towards goal. With age and injuries catching up with him, he is more selective about his runs. He is still one of the fastest in the world but a tad slower than he was a couple of years ago.

He plays more centrally these days or as a false 9. He is more of a striker than a left winger. He plays closer to the goal than he was before and let his midfielders do the job of moving the ball. He does not offer much outside the box and runs less.

His goals from outside the box reduced drastically over the last couple of seasons and he is not the threat he once used to be. He does not contribute a lot to the build-up play and the stats below clearly shows where he was once and where he is now.

Shots from outside the penalty area (La Liga & UCL)

2014/15 (Total, per game)- 126, 2.9

2015/16 (Total, per game)- 114, 2.7

2016/17 (Total, per game)- 74, 1.8

2017/18 (Total, per game)- 12, 1.2

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