The flashy, feisty and amazingly talented Christiano Ronaldo captured his third Ballon d’Or trophy on Monday, affirming his status, once again, as “the best soccer player in the world.”
But, in addition to taking home the gilded trophy (yes, it is covered in real gold), the high-scoring striker for Portugal and Real Madrid was also honored by Nike with custom-made diamond-encrusted boots.
Primarily gold in color and accented by golden cleats, the “Mercurial CR7 Rare Gold” soccer boots are highlighted by a CR7 symbol that’s completely covered with hand-applied micro-diamonds.
Ronaldo, who accepted Monday’s trophy while sporting diamond stud earrings, will be wearing the blingy, one-of-a-kind footwear today during Real Madrid’s match against Atletico Madrid in the second leg of Spain’s Copa del Rey tournament. Real Madrid is the defending champ.
Nike described the symbolism behind the gold color and use of micro-diamonds in the design.
“Gold was selected as the main color on the boot because gold is earned. Ronaldo earned his golden award with tremendous play for club and country,” Nike noted in a statement. “As a tribute to Ronaldo’s work ethic, Nike added a special touch to the Mercurial CR7 Rare Gold. For the first time in Nike history, micro-diamonds have been applied by hand to the CR7 logo of the boot.”
“The micro-diamonds are remnants from larger stones that are painstakingly perfected by craftsmen,” Nike added. “As the diamonds are refined and the details sharpened, tiny pieces are cut away, leaving micro-diamonds behind as evidence of work in progress. The commitment to keep chipping away at something already impressive reminded Nike’s design team of Ronaldo’s work ethic. While many see Ronaldo as the best in the world, he sees room for improvement.”
A native of Portugal, the 29-year-old Ronaldo scored an incredible 52 goals in 43 games in 2014 — a year in which he won the Champions League, Copa del Rey, European Super Cup, Club World Cup and Ballon d’Or.
Boot images courtesy of Nike