• For a few glorious, goal-filled years, Ronaldo was the greatest soccer player on the planet. The Brazilian bowed out of the game Feb. 14, at 34, succumbing finally to years of damage that the sport had inflicted on his body. At his peak, Ronaldo was a force of nature--dubbed by fans simply as the Phenomenon. He had lightning-quick feet and an ability to bulldoze past despairing opponents. Ronaldo scored more than 300 goals for some of Europe's most storied clubs, won two World Cups with Brazil and is one of only two players to be named FIFA's Player of the Year three times--the last in 2002. While salacious scandals followed him off the pitch a number of times, they can't overshadow his legacy as one of soccer's most irrepressible talents.