Cristiano Ronaldo Shows off Trophy Haul and Talks 'Incredible Year' with Real

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistJanuary 2, 2018

Real Madrid's Portuguese forward Cristiano Ronaldo runs with the ball during the Spanish League 'Clasico' football match Real Madrid CF vs FC Barcelona at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid on December 23, 2017.  / AFP PHOTO / OSCAR DEL POZO        (Photo credit should read OSCAR DEL POZO/AFP/Getty Images)
OSCAR DEL POZO/Getty Images

Cristiano Ronaldo hailed an "incredible year" with Real Madrid as he posed with his five Ballon d'Or awards and numerous other individual gongs following a stellar 2017. 

In December, the Portuguese superstar won his fifth Ballon d'Or after helping Real to La Liga and UEFA Champions League glory in 2016-17, and he credited those who helped him as he looked back over a successful year, per Manu Sainz of AS:

"2017 has been an incredible year on a lot of levels. It's a tremendous feeling to look back and look at what I have achieved, having started off kicking a ball around the streets of Madeira. I was blessed with talent, and I have worked really hard to make the most of it. But I wouldn't have achieved it without the collaboration of a lot of people who have helped me professionally."

Ronaldo, 32, netted 10 goals in the knockout stages of the 2016-17 Champions League to propel Real to their third title in four years, and he has continued in the same vein of form in Europe this term.

In La Liga, though, the former Manchester United star has been unusually quiet, netting just four times in 12 appearances.

His own dip in domestic form has corresponded with Real's struggles in the league this term.

The champions sit fourth in the Spanish top flight, 14 points back from leaders Barcelona.

The Catalan giants made sure Real's year ended in disappointing fashion as they thrashed Los Blancos 3-0 at the Santiago Bernabeu in the final game before the winter break.

Ronaldo could do nothing to stop Barca prevailing in El Clasico, but Real will need him at his best for the rest of the season if they are to bridge the gap to the top of the table.

Zinedine Zidane's side have a game in hand over Barca, but the title may already be gone for Real. The Blaugrana would have to collapse spectacularly to give up the advantage they hold.

As such, Real may decide to put all their focus on winning another Champions League, an endeavour Ronaldo will likely relish as he looks to join the elite group to have won Europe's premier competition on five occasions. 

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