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After a mistimed tackle from France's Dimitri Payet, Ronaldo and all of his 6 ft 2 frame fell to the floor. Immediately, he clutched his knee and screamed in grimace.
Having received some treatment from the medical staff, a determined Ronaldo attempted to play on but he was in no state to continue.
The skipper was in tears as he stretchered off and replaced by Ricardo Quaresma. Here he was being forced off in what was a huge chance to finally win some international silverware.
But this is where his elite mentality shone through. Ronaldo couldn't affect the game on the pitch but he elected to contribute from the touchline.
A lot of players would have sulked and felt sorry for themselves but CR7 had other ideas.
With his knee bandaged up, an animated Ronaldo showed the footballing world a glimpse of his managerial style by standing on the touchline.
Fernando Santos was the man supposed to be delivering orders to the Portugal players but he was joined in the technical area by Ronaldo - who kicked every ball and regularly gave key instructions to his teammates.
Former Swansea City striker Eder was the unlikely hero at the Stade de France when he popped up in extra time to sink France on their own patch and win Portugal's first major trophy.
Ronaldo still had enough energy to lift the trophy and partake in the euphoric celebrations - and although he only played 25 minutes in the showpiece - his influence from the bench was invaluable.
He's already cemented his place as one of the greatest players ever to play game but his performance on the touchline in Paris four years ago hinted that he had the capacity to make a seamless transition into management.
It's the natural progression for a player once they retire from the game and though Ronaldo is still a physical specimen aged 35 - as well as having ambitions to conquer the business world - going into coaching remains an option.
Asked by Spanish magazine ICON about the possibility of being sat in the dug-out in the future, he simply replied: "I'm not ruling it out."
They say great players don't always make great coaches but having played under two of the very best in the game in Sir Alex Ferguson, Ronaldo would appear to have all the tools to make the switch.
In that same triumphant Euro 2016 tournament,the former Real Madrid superstar proved what an excellent leader he is with his words of wisdom to João Moutinho, now plying his trade with Wolves.
Moutinho was against the idea of stepping up to take a spot-kick in the quarter final against Poland but skipper Ronaldo came over and spoke to the Monaco star, eventually convincing him to take a penalty with an inspirational speech.
"Hey! Come kick, come kick. You hit them well. If we lose f*** it! Be strong, come on, you hit them well. It's in God's hands now!"
Moutinho was ultimately persuaded to step up to the mark and made no mistake, sending Lukasz Fabianski the wrong way with a tidy penalty.
Cristiano Ronaldo the manager? Don't be surprised if you see it when the five-time Ballon d'Or winner finally decides to call it a day.
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