Thursday May 28,2015 : FAMOUS FOOTBALLER TO REPRESENT POKERSTARS
Soccer legend Cristiano Ronaldo is a keen poker player.
The PokerStars blog reports that soccer legend Cristiano Ronaldo has joined the ranks of its famous poker playing ambassadors, active both online in social and poker media, and at live tourneys.
The three-time FIFA Balon d'Or winner and two-time Champions League champion from Funchal, Portugal, decided to become a member of Team PokerStars and sign a sponsorship contract for an undisclosed sum. He has captained Portugal's national side and plays for the massively popular Real Madrid professional team.
Thirty-something Ronaldo was reportedly one of the highest paid sportsmen on the planet last year, thanks to salary and top brand endorsement income, and has a net worth somewhere north of Euro 80 million.
"I like playing for winning teams, and PokerStars is the perfect partner for me," Ronaldo said this week. "As a brand, it is always looking at ways to improve and stay ahead of the curve, and as an athlete that is something I truly respect.
"Although football is my world, poker has always been my game. I'm very excited to join the team. I started playing poker a few years ago, and I love the competition, strategy and fun. I'm looking forward to taking my game to the online and live poker tables and meeting my fans head to head."
Pokerstars stands to benefit handsomely from his involvement; in social media terms alone Ronaldo can boast a Twitter following of over 35.5 million, and 103 million Facebook fans.
Pokerstars interim CEO Michael Hazel commented:
"Ronaldo is one of the most famous names in the world and PokerStars is thrilled to partner with him. We look forward to him spreading his love of the game worldwide by sharing his PokerStars experiences with his huge social following and fan base."
The chief executive of Pokerstars' parent group, Amaya Gaming, is also pleased with the signing. David Baazov said in a statement:
"Ronaldo is part of a new generation of global superstar athletes that work hard, play smart, and encourage their fans to share in their lives. We're proud that Ronaldo – and fellow elite [Brazilian and Barcelona football] player Neymar Jr. – have chosen to make PokerStars a partner in their journey and to share their love of the game of poker with their legions of fans."
Other top sports figures in the Pokerstars stable include Olympic field hockey captain Fatima Moreira de Melo and professional tennis legend Rafa Nadal.