Updated: Mon, 21 Nov 2022 06:08 PM IST
Following an explosive interview about Manchester United owner, Portugal star player Cristiano Ronaldo is once again gaining traction and this time for all the right reasons. The ace football player has scripted history after he become the first person in the world to reach 500 million followers on Instagram.
Ronaldo reached the milestone followers on Monday. He is one of the highest-paid athletes on Instagram and reportedly earns the highest for sharing a single post on the photo-sharing app. Ronaldo reached 400 million followers in February this year and he reached the 300-million mark in June last year.
In January 2020, he hit 200 million followers on Instagram. He is also equally popular on social media sites as he has over 100 million followers on Twitter and over 150 Million on Facebook.
Argentine superstar Lionel Messi is in the second spot on the list of most followers as he has 376 million on Instagram. India's star batter and former captain Virat Kohli is in the seventh spot on the list with 203 million followers.
Earlier, today in an explosive interview, Portugal superstar Cristiano Ronaldo hit back at criticism over his explosive Manchester United interview insisting "I talk when I want to''.
The Portugal captain said that he is not worried about how his actions will impact the squad, adding that he feels great about their chances of winning the World Cup.
"In my life, the best timing is always my timing," Ronaldo told a news conference on Monday.
"I don't have to think about what other people think. The players know me really well for many years and know the type of person I am.
Referring to himself in the third person, Ronaldo said that "everything related to him will always spark criticism and controversy."
The 37-year-old Ronaldo confirmed that the awkward handshake between him and attacking midfielder Bruno Fernandes that was caught on camera and went viral was the result of a joke between the Portugal and United teammates.
"My relationship with him (Fernandes) is excellent," Ronaldo said. "I was joking with him. His plane arrived late and I asked if he had come by boat. That's it.
"The environment in the changing room is excellent. No problems. The group is shielded. And I take this opportunity to say: stop asking about me."
After missing Thursday's friendly against Nigeria in Lisbon due to a stomach problem, Ronaldo has been training as usual with teammates since arriving in Qatar on Friday and he said he feels in shape. Portugal will open their 2022 World Cup campaign against Ghana on Thursday.