Nani - Ronaldo exit helped me shine
Nani feels the exit of Cristiano Ronaldo helped him make his mark at Old Trafford and the winger hopes to emulate Ronaldo's success.
Nani struggled to make an impact with Manchester United until Ronaldo joined Real Madrid in 2009 and the winger admits that, while he enjoyed playing alongside the gifted playmaker, he has been able to impress since his Portuguese compatriot moved to the Bernabeu. "It is easier for me to stand out now that Cristiano Ronaldo has left the club," said Nani. "He is a fantastic player who got all the attention and deservedly so. I loved playing alongside him and we got on well together. "But it is also true to say that, when he left United, it freed up space for other players to shine. "When he left, I saw an opportunity to demonstrate my qualities and to show the people at United what I can do. That is exactly what I have done." Nani, 24, has now set his sights on personal glory and the United star hopes he can secure at least a nomination for the prestigious Ballon d'Or award in the near future. He added: "I know I can become a better player and my aim now is to get on the list of nominees for next year's Ballon d'Or - the European Player of the Year prize. "I want to leave my mark and hope after I retire that people will say Nani was a great player. I really want to do something special in my lifetime."