“The best always influence their sport, so I think I’ve had a major impact. I can’t say how, only time will tell, but if you can run fast, jump higher than the others and be strong and agile at the same time, you can make your talent even more effective.
“I worked very hard to reach the highest level and I still [work as hard] to stay where I am.
“I adopt the same attitude and dedication in every training session and every game to keep making history in this sport.
“[On the Portuguese national team], I feel like a citizen of the world, but also a Portuguese who loves his country and is proud to represent it at the highest levels for a long time yet.
“After Euro 2004, I was responsible for a great [Portuguese] generation. I know many boys and girls who see me today as an inspiration.”