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Cristiano Ronaldo saved best friend Jose Semedo's life

Sunaadh Sagar
FEATURED COLUMNIST
News
12.43K   //    01 Dec 2015, 17:10 IST
Cristiano Ronaldo Sporting Lisbon Academy
Cristiano Ronaldo became best friends with Jose Semedo in Sporting Lisbon’s academy

Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo has been credited with saving best friend Jose Semedo’s life. Semedo, currently plying his trade for Sheffield Wednesday, claimed that it was Ronaldo’s intervention while together at Sporting Lisbon’s academy that saved him from dying on the streets.

Speaking to The Times, Semedo opined that had a teenaged Ronaldo not prevented Sporting Lisbon from dispensing with his services, his life could’ve taken a very dark turn. Semedo & Ronaldo met in Sporting Lisbon’s academy, where they grew to be the best of friends. However, their talents lay at opposite ends of the spectrum & Sporting made the decision to let Semedo go. However, Ronaldo’s was insistent that Semedo stay, threatening to leave as well. It was a sign of how valued Ronaldo’s precocious talents were that Sporting Lisbon’s directors agreed to let Semedo continue with the club.

"He said they could put an extra bed in his room and that we could share a cupboard for his clothes. He said that if I went, he would too. The place I am from in Setubal is not a good place for a young man. A lot of my friends from there were involved in crime. Some of them are dead now, or in jail.” said Semedo. 

Jose Semedo Sheffield Wednesday
Semedo’s career took an opposite direction to that of Ronaldo

Despite Ronaldo’s intervention, Semedo was unable to develop further & left Sporting Lisbon without making a first team appearance. However, he represented Portugal in the 2006 UEFA U-21 Euro Championships, with the likes of Nani, Ricardo Quaresma & João Moutinho. His appearances earned him a move to England, becoming an important defensive midfielder for Charlton Athletic, where he was crowned their Player of the Year. Semedo later earned promotion to the Championship with Sheffield Wednesday, where he currently plies his trade.

Despite their divergent career paths, Semedo remains grateful to the Ballon d’Or nominee. Speaking of Ronaldo’s largesse, Semedo said “I owe everything I have to him. He changed my life. My family, my children, my career: it is all because of him." 

Having known him for almost two decades, Semedo still catches up with the Real Madrid star, and would naturally be rooting for him to win the Ballon d’Or.


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Sunaadh Sagar
FEATURED COLUMNIST
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