Rio Ferdinand breaks down THAT Cristiano Ronaldo wonder goal against Porto
"I'm still telling him now not to shoot."
At the age of 36, Cristiano Ronaldo is still banging in the goals at an unprecedented rate. So far this season, he has 23 goals in 26 games across all competitions. You will not be surprised by these statistics, but it is worth taking a moment to process just how impressive it is for a footballer to sustain such consistency in front of goal for such a long time.
Ahead of Juventus' Champions League knock-out tie with Porto on Wednesday night, the BT Sport panel discussed the magnitude of his longevity, with Joe Cole saying the world of football had "never seen a player like him"
Rio Ferdinand then went into more detail as he recalled one of Ronaldo's best ever goals, of which there are many, scored away at Porto 11 years ago (I know, feel old yet etc.)
"I'm still telling him now, 'no!', not to shoot," Ferdinand said remembering the 40-yard strike at the Estadio do Dragao.
"He did things in games that would make you scratch your hair, you'd say, 'How?'," he added.
"40 yards out, 64.2 miles an hour."
"40 yards out, 64.2 miles an hour!"
"He silenced a lot of people."
As Cristiano Ronaldo returns to the scenes of one of his greatest ever career goals, @rioferdy5 shares his version of events from a famous evening at Estádio do Dragão 💫 pic.twitter.com/M2z28bEy50
— Football on BT Sport (@btsportfootball) February 17, 2021
"When the ball comes into him here, he gets his head down. At that moment, I'll never forget it, I tell my kids about this all the time.
"I was screaming here, 'No! No! No!" Rio explained, as he tried to convince Ronaldo to pass the ball instead.
"He doesn't even look up and look for anybody, he just gets the ball and straight away, all he's thinking about doing is shooting.
"I'm behind him there," Ferdinand demonstrated.
"My face and his face are identical there," he said, before Gary Lineker quipped back: "They're probably the only similarities between you too."
Talking about the celebrations after the ball had rocketed in from 40 yards out, Rio said: "I'm going mad here. Things like this, I used to love this. 'This is why you're the best'," he said, explaining what he said to Ronaldo in the aftermath of his wonder goal.
In response to Lineker asking Ferdinand why he was strangling Ronaldo in the image above, Ferdinand admitted: "Because I wanted him to stay."
"I was begging him, like all the other players at the time, 'please stay'. This was the third league title on the bounce, we wanted to break the records and stuff.
"And I'm saying, 'that's why you're the best, that's why you've got to stay here.'"
Ronaldo didn't stay after that season, but the six years he did spend with Manchester United were when United played some of the best football the Premier League has ever seen.
This was something of a coming of age moment for Ronaldo, Rio explains, having "tried to play the occasion" away at Benfica a couple of years before.
"The manager caned him at half-time," he said. "Almost crying he was."
"He got here, maturity was top notch, scored that goal and silenced a lot of people."