After the disappointment of the 1998 World Cup in France, where Ronaldo and Brazil were beaten 3-0 by the host nation, 'R9' was not messing around four years on in Japan and South Korea.
The tournament completely belonged to Ronaldo, who bagged the Golden Boot having scored eight goals en route to Brazil's fifth World Cup triumph.
Ronaldo, who was playing for Inter Milan at the time, was simply unplayable and with his infamous haircut, came up clutch with two goals in the 2-0 win over Germany in the final.
The fact that he was this complete after being plagued by serious knee problems makes it even more impressive and shows what a gem of a player Ronaldo was.
The balance, shimmies, faints and composure. O' Fenomeno' is a nickname that is richly deserved.
The two-time Ballon d'Or winner earned a mega move to Real Madrid that summer following his sublime showings on the world stage, winning the La Liga title in his first campaign and going on to score 104 goals in 177 appearances for Los Blancos.
He is third in the all-time scoring charts for the Selecao national team, having notched 62 goals in 98 games. Last month, Neymar surpassed him in the rankings and paid tribute to the icon by doing his finger-wagging celebration.
2007 Ballon d'Or winner and AC Milan legend Kaka played with both Ronaldos but believes his compatriot was more gifted.
He told SPORTbible: "Brazilian Ronaldo was the best player I ever played with. The things I saw that guy do on the field was amazing. Ronaldo was the best I played with, but what Cristiano did - and is doing - is just unreal.
"The most important thing for me about Cristiano is the way he can motivate himself after all the achievements he has got."
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