SportsCristiano Ronaldo's Golden Ball bought by Israeli billionaire in charity auction

Cristiano Ronaldo's Golden Ball bought by Israeli billionaire in charity auction

In the photo: Cristiano Ronaldo
In the photo: Cristiano Ronaldo
Images source: © Getty Images | Angel Martinez, Real Madrid
12:27 AM EST, January 13, 2024

The representative of Portugal sits just behind Lionel Messi regarding the number of Golden Balls received, as Messi has managed to secure the trophy eight times. Ronaldo, the former Real Madrid star, triumphed in five.

In 2013, Cristiano Ronaldo tallied more votes than Messi and Franck Ribery. After receiving his trophy, the legendary footballer showcased it before donating it to a worthy cause.

In a grand gesture, Ronaldo, as reported by "Marca," commissioned a replica of the trophy. Four years later, it was donated to the "Make-A-Wish" foundation, an organization dedicated to fulfilling sick children's dreams.

Ronaldo's agent, Jorge Mendes, presented the replica of the Golden Ball at an auction in London, where it was sold for a substantial sum — approximately 532,000 pounds.

Idan Ofer, a billionaire renowned as the wealthiest man in Israel, placed the winning bid.

Idan Ofer and his brother Eyal inherited a vast fortune from his father, a leading figure in the transportation industry.

Ofer is engaged in various industries, such as mining, sailing, and energy. Interestingly, he is also actively participating in the sports industry, having invested in Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid, and Famalicao.

Ofer generously invested considerable funds to secure the Golden Ball from Mendes. With this purchase, the billionaire supported a charity initiative in grand style.

The expenditure is remarkable, considering Ofer acquired only a replica for over half a million. The original Golden Ball, which Ronaldo won, remains on display in the footballer's museum in Madeira.

At present, Cristiano Ronaldo is playing for Saudi Arabian Al-Nassr. Interestingly, he wasn't among the nominated players in the latest edition of the "France Football" magazine's poll.

Related content