LISBON - World player of the year Cristiano Ronaldo returned to his home town of Funchal on Madeira on Sunday to attend the unveiling of a statue sculpted in his honour.
The Real Madrid star travelled to the Portuguese island from Marrakech where on Saturday he helped his club lift the Club World Cup, their fourth trophy of 2014.
"This is a very special moment, to have a statue of me," said an emotional Ronaldo at the ceremony where he was joined by members of his family and thousands of fans.
"Ronaldo has never forgotten his origins," said his mother, Dolores Aveiro.
The 3.4m statue forms part of Ronaldo's personal museum on the island housing his haul of trophies including his two Ballon d'Or titles, with a third one possibly on its way as he is favourite to win the FIFA award again.
Ronaldo, who won the Ballon d'Or for the first time in 2008, is on the shortlist after scoring a record 17 goals in a Champions League campaign as Real Madrid went on to win their 10th European Cup last term.