Real Madrid and Portugal forward Cristiano Ronaldo has generously donated a replica Ballon d’Or trophy, which he won in 2013, to a London auction, where it raised a massive £530,000 for the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
The event was held at the Dorchester Hotel on October 3, where the original target of raising £1.5 million was almost doubled, with a closing figure of £2.7 million.
The Make-A-Wish Foundation is a particular favourite charity of Ronaldo, and he is a great supporter of it with regular donations and assistance in granting wishes to sick children around the world.
The Real Madrid star has won the Ballon d’Or a total of four times, and was presented engraved awards in 2008, 2013, 2014 and 2016. It is recognised as the highest honour to be awarded to a football player on a personal level.
A family-run jewellers, which has been around for over 400 years, has made the trophy since it was introduced in 1956. The trophy itself resembles a football and is made of brass, then dipped in gold. Created using a real football as a template, the trophy is handcrafted and the seams painstakingly chiselled by master craftsmen. The ball sits above a base of pyrite, which is described as unique and is an intentional design feature.
As the name of the winner is not known until the award ceremony night, the jewellers have three plaques engraved with each of the nominees names on, ready to attach to the trophy when the winner is announced.