Cristiano Ronaldo Sculptor Emanuel Santos Defends Madeira Airport Statue

Christopher Simpson@@CJSimpsonBRFeatured ColumnistMarch 30, 2017

TOPSHOT - Portuguese footballer Cristiano Ronaldo stands past a bust presented during a ceremony where Madeira's airport in Funchal is to be renamed after Cristiano Ronaldo, on Madeira island, on March 29, 2017.
Madeira airport, the birthplace of Portuguese footballer Cristiano Ronaldo, was renamed today in honor of the quadruple Ballon d'or and captain of the Portuguese team sacred European champion last summer. / AFP PHOTO / FRANCISCO LEONG        (Photo credit should read FRANCISCO LEONG/AFP/Getty Images)
FRANCISCO LEONG/Getty Images

Emanuel Santos, the sculptor of the much-maligned bust of Cristiano Ronaldo at Madeira Airport, has defended his work, as he believes the Real Madrid star is a fan of the statue.

Per MailOnline's Gerard Couzens and the Daily Mail's Oliver Todd, Santos said: 

He [Ronaldo] only asked for some wrinkles to be changed, that give him a certain expression in his face when he's about to laugh.

He said it made him look older and asked for it to be thinned out a bit to make it smoother and more jovial. But they gave it the go-ahead before they liked what they saw.

...

I asked him what he thought of the result and he said he liked it.

The statue was unveiled on Wednesday to commemorate the airport being renamed in Ronaldo's honour, and it was widely mocked on social media:

Santos said he had to base his work off photographs of the forward as Ronaldo was unable to model for him in person, and the sculptor added that "the end result is never going to please everyone."