Originally written on NESN.com  |  Last updated 2/5/13
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On Thursday, Cristiano Ronaldo celebrated his 28th birthday with some cake at Portugal’s practice facility in Guimares, Portugal. The Portuguese superstar has been a force on the soccer field for over a decade, and he has the numbers to prove it. One fan marked the occasion with a celebratory tribute video which compiles every goal Ronaldo has scored at club level during his glittering career. There were 302 in all, which is no small feat for a player who started his career as a wide midfielder. The video serves as a time capsule of sorts. It starts with the two goals he scored for Sporting CP (Lisbon) to lead his team to victory against Moreirense on Oct. 7, 2002. It was the then 17-year-old Ronaldo’s league debut. The tribute soon takes viewers through Ronaldo’s glory years, which started less than a year later when he moved to Manchester United. The good times include the 42 goals he scored in 2007-08, which powered United to Premier League and UEFA Champions League titles. The goal party continued — even after he became the most expensive player in history when he moved from United to Real Madrid for  £80 million ($128 million) in 2009. It includes his the many goals he has scored in “El Clasico,” and continues through his most recent strike — the third of the three goals he scored against Getafe on Jan. 27. The existence of Lionel Messi in Ronaldo’s career has cost the Real Madrid forward records, awards and a bit of the spotlight. But the rivalry the two players share has certainly pushed Ronaldo to be greater than he might have otherwise been. That could explain why Ronaldo’s tribute video is over 18 minutes long, and the next one could break the 20-minute mark. We won’t even bother trying to pick the best of the bench, but you might have a favorite. Let us know if you do. Watch all 302 of Ronaldo’s club goals in the video below. Have a question for Marcus Kwesi O’Mard? Send it to him via Twitter at @NESNsoccer, NESN Soccer’s Facebook page or send it here. He will pick a few questions to answer every week for his mailbag. Thumbnail photo via Facebook/Cristiano Ronaldo
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