THIS is the new bust of footballer Cristiano Ronaldo that actually looks like the Real Madrid striker.
Artist Emanuel Santos was mocked all over the world after creating a bronze bust to mark the renaming of an airport in their native island of Madeira.
But last night Spanish sculptor Jose Antonio Navarro Arteaga, 52, was soaking up the praise of his lookalike statue for Real Madrid’s museum with a bust which got 10 out of 10 from fans and critics.
His work received the thumbs-up as it emerged Jose was spurred into action by his Real Madrid fan son .
He begged him to do a “nice” version of Cristiano, aged 32, after seeing the sculpture at Madeira’s international airport.
Critics, though, have claimed Jose Antonio’s 35-inch-high, 9.5 stone bust makes the former Manchester United forward look more handsome than he is.
Sevilla-born Jose Antonio has refused to reveal the cost of his work – but said he spent spent less than half the £90,000 on a bust he did of a Spanish duchess who died in 2014 and was richer than Queen Elizabeth II.
He told Spanish daily El Mundo: “I used several photos of Cristiano to work from.
“What I wanted to reflect was his interior strength, when he was preparing to take a free kick or a corner.”
Cristiano was unable to attend the official unveiling of the bust but Real Madrid legend Emilio Butragueno stood in for him.
Real Madrid supporter Jose Rodriguez wrote on Twitter: “Finally a bust that actually looks like Cristiano.
“The last one was a complete and utter disaster. This one actually makes him look more handsome than he is in real life.”
Fan Sergio Gonzalez added: “What a wonderful piece of work. This is a true piece of art.”
Emanuel Santos was ribbed in March after crafting a questionable bronze bust of Cristiano to mark the renaming of the Madeira airport after the footballer.
The 40-year-old, who like Ronaldo comes from the Atlantic island, admitted he only took 15 days to complete the statue after proposing the idea to airport bosses when he found about the renaming plans.
He confessed he had to work off photos of the footballer because it would have been impossible to get “very busy” Ronaldo to model for him in person.
But the former airport cleaner, who confessed to being self-taught and devoting himself full-time to sculpture for just two years, said he was happy with the result.
He claimed it had been given the thumbs-up by Cristiano and his doting mum Dolores as well as the airport chiefs who commissioned him.
The statute was trolled after it was unveiled at a ceremony to mark the renaming of the airport on Cristiano’s home island as the Aeroporto Cristiano Ronaldo.
The footballer, flanked by his doting Dolores, Spanish girlfriend Georgina Rodriguez, and son Cristiano Jr, said afterwards he felt “happy and honoured.”
But the bust that made all the wrong headlines, with some fans claiming the sculptor had drunk too much Madeiran wine before starting his work.
Others joked it made Cristiano look like something out of a horror film.
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