Soccer pro Cristiano RonaldoÂ has more than 35 million Twitter followers, nearly 103 million likes on Facebook, made $80 million in 2014, and is one of the best soccer players in the world. And for a little icing on the cake, he’s also a better poker player than most.
The 30-year-old Portugal forward and star footballer for Spanish club Real Madrid landed his 29th career hat-trick on Saturday by scoring three goals against Sevilla to stay in touch with frontrunner Barcelona.
Sevilla hadn’t lost on its home pitch in 35 previous matches, making Ronaldo’s feat that more impressive.
While some sports stars might celebrate with a bottle of champagne or treat themselves to an indulgent night on the town, Ronaldo took off the cleats and sat down at the poker table.
Although it’s unclear exactly where or with whom, it appears to be in his living room and no actual opponent or losing hand is shown. Maybe he just wanted to post a selfie.
Regardless, his followers, particularly his many female fans, no doubt enjoyed any excuse to see their heartthrob.
Ronaldo was basically pitch-perfect during the match, but he one-upped himself at the poker table. The photo he posted showed the soccer stud in front of community cards 6â™ 5â™£ 5â™¥ 7â™ 4â™£ with the caption:
Nice time to have my favourite hand.Â 7â™¥ 7 â™£
#fullhouse #CR7 #poker”
Though many factors go into computing the odds of poker hands, including number of players, your pocket hand, etc., the odds of one man scoring three goals in a match are believed to be even more of a long shot than a full house in poker.
Considering he’s competed in nearly 500 matches throughout his storied career, and had a hat-trick in just 29 of those games, the odds of witnessing a three-goal feat is just 5.8 percent. Of course, that low percentage greatly diminishes even further for anyone other than Ronaldo.
Poker fans might be more familiar with another Ronaldo, PokerStars Team SportsStars member Ronaldo LuÃs NazÃ¡rio de Lima. The former Brazilian footballer, now 38, is thought to be one of the greatest to ever play the game.
The highest-scoring World Cup participant of all-time joined the largest poker network on the planet in 2013, agreeing to a sponsorship deal as he grows the game in his home country and online. His first live tournament cashing came in January of 2015, placing 26th in the EPT PokerStars Caribbean Adventure Main Event for a take of $42,180.
Cristiano has previously dabbled with online poker. In 2010, pro Dan Cates, known online as “jungleman12,” received a Skype call from the soccer star to play some low-stakes poker on Full Tilt.
Though estimates have his net worth approaching half a billion dollars, Cristiano Ronaldo challenged Cates to a $1 and $2 pot-limit Omaha session.
“It kind of sucked being owned by him though,” Cates said in 2010. “I was thinking, ‘Wow, I am getting destroyed by this guy and he hardly plays.'”
Apparently, Cristiano is playing more frequently, leading us to ponder whether PokerStars might grab its second Ronaldo name for its celebrity roster. That is, of course, assuming PokerStars wishes to muster up the funds to land such a superstar.