Putting Cristiano Ronaldo to the Cool Test

Charles Lawley@@charleslawleyContributor IApril 24, 2013

ZURICH, SWITZERLAND - JANUARY 07: (L-R) Irina Shayk and Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid pose during the red carpet arrivals for the FIFA Ballon d’Or Gala 2012 on January 7, 2013 at Congress House in Zurich, Switzerland. (Photo by Christof Koepsel/Getty Images)
Christof Koepsel/Getty Images

Cristiano Ronaldo's Real Madrid face Borussia Dortmund tonight.  Dortmund is a side that could be considered "cool"—they play an attractive style of football and they have a tendency to bring in young players.  Plus, with the success and dominance of Bayern Munich they're not everyone's first choice for a German team to support. 

So we've established Dortmund are cool. It only took two sentences. Easy peasy.

But with a below-par performance from Lionel Messi last night and with Mario Gotze due to get a reception as cold as a corpse, the stage is set for Cristiano Ronaldo to grab some headlines.

But is Ronaldo, a man who has played for the third and first most popular teams in the world, cool?

First we must ask, what is "cool?" Is it The Fonz? Is it Jimi Hendrix? Is it Linkin Park? Is it Marlon Brando? Well, it’s all of those things apart from Linkin Park. But what makes them cool?

The dictionary defines “cool” as “of a fairly low temperature” but that’s probably because we’re looking at the wrong meaning for the word.

We’re talking about the slang “cool.”

To embody “coolness” you must possess an "admired aesthetic of attitude, behavior, comportment, appearance and style influenced by and a product of zeitgeist," according to Wikipedia.

Two psychologists conducted a study into whether or not Steve Buscemi is “cool” (yes, apparently that is some people’s jobs) and in doing so they believed they cracked the code as to what makes someone "cool."

Apparently their study found that cool equates to being good looking, a high-achiever, friendly, trendy, confident, having a sense of humour and even volunteering to help in society.

So we’ll conduct CR7’s cool test on those factors.


First, calling yourself “CR7” isn’t cool. Not even slightly. It might be your initials and shirt number, but it’s also a postcode for Thornton Heath in South London. One of the boroughs of Croydon's most uncool districts.

It may be on trend for superstar footballers to expand their “brand” further than playing football, such as David Beckham’s boxers (designed by him, not a second hand pair of his underwear—although both would probably sell), Michael Owen's horse racing stable (previously “a Michael Owen horse” was another term for horses that had so many injuries that it’s just kinder to euthanize them) and Rio Ferdinand dabbling in everything from restaurants to terrible TV prank shows.

Ronaldo has opened a fashion boutique under the name CR7—which isn’t what fashion boutiques should sound like. They should be called something like "Attica" or "Le Emporium" or be someone's name.  But with both the first and last names being first names, such as Ian Simon or Clare Jane or John Terry. CR7 sounds more like a motor oil.

It might be trendy for footballers to branch out but Ronaldo’s extra-curricular are very close to not being cool.


OK, it’s fair to say Cristiano Ronaldo is a good-looking gentleman.

He’s done a spot of modelling in his time and needs very little excuse to whip his shirt off to display his physique. But while he is a handsome man, he’s maybe not as attractive as he thinks he is.

He does always seem a bit soggy-looking and if you ever touched him, you feel you’d probably have to dry your hands afterwards.

The world’s most attractive men are those who look the least moist.


Cristiano Ronaldo is a professional footballer, which is pretty cool. And he’s represented his country, very cool. In fact he’s often mentioned as possibly being the best footballer in the world, cool as a cucumber (which, despite the common expression, cucumber is one of the vegetable world's least cool members. Broccoli is where it's at.)

The popular belief is that Ronaldo is second best in the word, behind Lionel Messi—but does that make him even cooler? More people thought The Beatles were better than the The Rolling Stones, but that probably made The Stones a little bit cooler.

“While the more mainstream kids prefer Messi, us hip cats are all hanging around at the back of the bike sheds, preferring Cristiano Ronaldo.”

He’s also the world’s most expensive player, he broke the world transfer record. And look at how many trophies he's won. Cool as ice (which was also the title of a 1991 film starring Vanilla Ice and Naomi Campbell—not cool).

But he has played for Manchester United, a team that are too popular and successful to ever be considered truly cool (if he wanted to up his coolness rating in this area, may I suggest that QPR would gladly have him and almost certainly pay his wage demands.)


Cristiano must be a very friendly man indeed. Just look at the list of supermodels and beautiful women he has been friendly with. You don’t enjoy the company of the likes of Gemma Atkinson, Maria Sharapova and Kim Kardashian without being as friendly as puppy.

However, he isn’t friendly for your computer. McAfee revealed that a web search for “Cristiano Ronaldo” comes up with more dangerous hits (sites that could have viruses) than any other footballer. If you came to this article via a “Cristiano Ronaldo” web search and are starting to panic, I can assure you that you won’t get a computer virus from Bleacher Report.

In terms of someone you can go up to and start a friendship with? Let’s compare him to Messi. I know, this is probably the first time he has ever been compared to Lionel Messi, but we shouldn't be afraid to try new things.

How do you imagine a friendship with each of them would go?

A friendship with Ronaldo would probably consist of lots of laughs but a shallow bond, with most topics of conversation revolving around Cristiano’s interests and him actually taking little notice in your likes and dislikes. Whereas being mates with Messi wouldn’t be very jokey or boisterous, but he would probably make a sincere effort to “get you”.


There’s no question in this one, Cristiano Ronaldo is very cool.

He has donated a lot of his personal wealth and effort to good causes. Ronaldo's helped with the 2004 Indian Ocean earthquake and tsunami, the 2010 Madeira flood, funding schools in Gaza, Save The Children, The Mangrove Care Forum, funding a pioneering treatment to help a child battling cancer and donating money to the hospital that saved his mother’s life.

He also gave a real boost to Portuguese society during the 2006 World Cup by helping the national team get through to the semi-finals after getting England’s Wayne Rooney sent off and winking at his teammates in the process (“winking” is a gesture that could probably also fall into the "friendly" category.)



…is not cool


We’ve gone this far now, so let's ask it one last time: Is Cristiano Ronaldo cool?

People whistle me because I am good-looking, rich and a great footballer. They are jealous of me."

He certainly thinks he is.


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