For years, if you were to ask the average Joe on the street to name the best soccer player in the world, those who do not follow soccer closely would probably say something to the effect of, “David Beckham. He’s the only one I know.”
Times have changed, and it appears there’s a challenger for the world’s most famous soccer playboy.
Cristiano Ronaldo is quickly becoming the new Hollywood-style soccer pro who is stirring up the buzz on and off the field. The 23-year-old is the first since Beckham to draw the attention of the world outside of futbol with a tabloid and paparazzi following that is starting to rival that of the decade-older Beckham. He nabbed yet another individual award when he comfortably won the iconic Ballon d’Or trophy Tuesday and his sponsorship deal with Nike is making headlines of its own.
Another sign of the attention he is receiving can be seen in the way that the two compare on Google Trends:
While Beckham still holds the edge on the number of total search results for his name with 18.4 million versus 16.2 million for Ronaldo, a Google search for news about each stacks up differently:
- Google News Results for “Cristiano Ronaldo” - 22,839
- Google News Results for “David Beckham” - 12,211
Read more about soccer stars on this soccer blog.