The consensus view is that Portuguese soccer mega-star Cristiano Ronaldo, currently being a weird brand robot in Japan, is not just a good-looking and sexy athlete, but perhaps the best-looking, the sexiest male athlete. But nah. His facial features are too small, his eyebrows too sculpted, his chin too weak, his head too weirdly small. He does not do it for me. I do not think you should bone him.

But what about his fabulous body? you are wondering. It’s true: his body is fabulous. Lean and toned and capable of doing breathtakingly athletic things.

I mean, bone him if you have to, I guess.

But, the thing is, pretty much all great soccer players have fabulous bodies; they are physical paragons playing a sport that demands both tremendous athleticism and endless stamina. Gareth Bale has a fucking phenomenal body, better even than Ronaldo’s, broad-shouldered and godlike, and I emphatically do not think you should bone him, because his face looks like the “Aaron Burr!” guy from the old Got Milk? commercial.

Great bodies are pretty common among professional athletes, is what I am saying. And, while Cristiano Ronaldo’s is perfection now and forever compared to, say, mine, relative to other professional athletes, it is not even all that amazing. In fact it might be a bit too teen-boy-ish, too slight and hairless, in keeping with his overall vibe of androidery. Compare him to LeBron ...

Pictured: [faints]

... and he’s not lookin’ so special now, is he? No he is not.

The point, here, is that the hotness of a professional athlete depends mostly on stuff other than how great a body he has. The handsomeness of his face, for one thing, but also his expressions, his athletic prowess, his success and celebrity and personal style and how he presents himself. Ironically, Cristiano Ronaldo himself is a testament to this. If he were not a historically great soccer player in a sexy attacking role, and had not come up on a succession of the world’s most famous and star-studded club teams, and were not consequently one of the world’s most famous celebrities, he would not be famous for his looks. He would just be a good-looking but overly groomed Portuguese dude. Probably not even the best-looking dude in your average Portuguese city, but almost certainly the most synthetic-looking. I would not want to bone him at all.


Here are some athletes I would rather bone, grouped by sport but otherwise presented in no particular order. The next time you are deciding which professional athlete to bone, these are the ones you should bone.


Photo via Getty.

That Barcelona’s Neymar is better-looking than Cristiano Ronaldo is beyond dispute. I mean just look at him. He is so good-looking that I cycle through being amazed at how good he looks and being angry at how much of the handsomeness he is hoarding for himself, all the way back around to wanting to sing love songs at him again. He’s much more slight of frame than Ronaldo, but I wouldn’t let that stand in the way of our love, and nor should you.

Olivier Giroud

Still photos don’t really do this Frenchman justice. In them, he looks too much like Christian Slater, and that is a bad thing for a man to look like. You will have to make do with this GIF, which makes my entire person blush.

Scroll back up to that Cristiano Ronaldo GIF up near the top, the one where he’s rubbing some shit on his abs or whatever, to see the difference between authentic charm and whatever the hell human emotion that android is going for up there. Oh, what’s that? You don’t want to? You want to stay here and watch Olivier Giroud spray himself forever? That’s cool, too.


I don’t know much of anything about Giroud; I’m made to understand by my colleague Billy Haisley that he is a flawed and frustrating soccer man. That is okay. His true calling is as a thief of hearts.

Jonathan de Guzmán

Jeez. Photo via AP.

All I know about Jonathan de Guzmán is that I was looking up players on the Netherlands’ World Cup squad last year so that I’d know who they were, saw a photo of him, and went, “Jeez, that guy’s reeeeeeeeally good-looking.” Is he good at soccer? Probably, I guess? I don’t even care. His face is beautiful.

He has a radiant smile, too! Cristiano Ronaldo does not have a radiant smile, because his mouth is tiny and his leathery skin is stretched so tight it crinkles into a horrible mummy-rictus whenever he tries to feign mirth. Do you want that terrifying grimace leering down (or up) at you as you are boning its owner? I think you do not.

Claudio Marchisio

Good Lord! Photo via Getty.

That is one handsome Italian soccer man, right there. All of his facial features are superior to Ronaldo’s. The discerning athlete-boner bones Claudio Marchisio a hundred times before ever even considering Real Madrid’s Botoxed cyborg.

Keisuke Honda

Photo via Getty.

Good chin. Great eyes. Spectacular cheekbones. This man is much better-looking than Cristiano Ronaldo. Also, Wikipedia says he’s married to a kindergarten teacher, which strikes me as adorable for some reason. In any case, if his wife is cool with it, you should bone him.

John Wall

Photo via AP.

My wife would leave me for John Wall. More to the point: I’d understand.

Manu Ginobili

Hear me out. Hear me out, dammit! I know he has lost his hair. I know he is old as fuck now. Still. He had hair, once ...

No, this mane is not Photoshopped. Photo via Getty.

... and is still both a) handsome, and b) good to look at, which is not exactly the same thing. A man can be handsome and boring to look at, if his is a bland handsomeness—if all the parts are where they should be and in reasonable proportion, but there’s nothing particularly fun or interesting happening on his face. Cristiano Ronaldo, for example, is handsome in the manner of any healthy, well-groomed, symmetrical man, and boring as hell to look at unless he’s playing soccer.


Manu, by contrast, is handsome and charming and fun to look at; I’d rather look at his face than Ronaldo’s, which looks like a Portuguese Ken doll’s face, only half as expressive. Manu’s face would be a better face to watch during boning. Enough to distract you from his bald spot? That’s for you to find out!

Chandler Parsons

Photo via Getty.

This is a downright unfair amount of handsomeness. What is Cristiano Ronaldo’s mere primped fitness next to this? It is nothing. If you choose to bone Cristiano Ronaldo over boning Chandler Parsons, you have wasted the privilege of choosing which male professional athlete to bone. That would be a grave mistake, my friend.

Larry Fitzgerald

Daaaaaaaaaang. Photo via Getty.

Many people would like to bone Tom Brady, but I am troubled by his bad dancing and the giant hole in his chin. For my money, the football man to bone is Larry Fitzgerald, who is more handsome than Brady or Ronaldo and also is built like LeBron.

Ian Desmond

Photo via Getty.

Those are some good eyebrows! The eyebrows make the face. And it’s a good face, besides.


Probably there are other handsome baseball men, but they all photograph really poorly, because they are all making somber derpfaces all the time, in accordance with the ridiculous sobriety and seriousness of baseball culture. Plus, many of them have disgusting baseball chins or gross wads of chewing tobacco stashed in their lower lips. This makes me doubt that boning a baseball player would be much fun: They’re goobers. Still, Ian Desmond is more handsome than Cristiano Ronaldo, so if the other professional athletes are busy that day, you can choose him for your boning purposes.

As you can see, many male athletes are a better choice for boning than Cristiano Ronaldo, who is handsome but definitely not the top choice for boning. Thank you.

Contact the author at or on Twitter @albertburneko.

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