Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has admitted that he expects to see Cristiano Ronaldo playing well into his 40s.
Now approaching 37 years old, Ronaldo remains in freakishly good condition and continues to be a level above most on the pitch. He has bagged four goals in his first three appearances for United this season and is showing no signs of slowing down.
Ronaldo has two years left on his United contract, which also includes an option for an extra 12 months, and Solskjaer confessed that he wouldn't be surprised if Ronaldo had another contract or two left in his legs.
"I wouldn’t be surprised if he was still playing at 40, not at all,’’ Solskjaer told reporters (via Goal).
‘’The way he looks after himself, that’s the key, that’s the key to it all and, of course, some genes. There must be some genes in there! He has put every single ounce of energy and effort into becoming the player he is.
‘’He deserves every single plaudit that he gets for first, his own physical state but, even more impressively, when you have achieved as much as he has. He is still just as hungry as ever.
‘’His mentality is still absolutely spot on and that’s just desire from inside of him and he’s going to keep going until his legs or even his head say no that’s it, I've given everything now."
Having sat out the Carabao Cup defeat to West Ham in midweek, Ronaldo is expected to reclaim his space in the starting lineup on Saturday, when Aston Villa make the trip to Old Trafford.
He will be looking to extend his scoring streak to three games, but also to keep United in the race at the top of the Premier League table. They are currently level on points with rivals Chelsea and Liverpool but sit below the two because of an inferior goal difference.