Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney has quite a few things to say about former team mate Cristiano Ronaldo. The England international's new book - My Decade in the Premier League - contains sections in which the former Everton man talks about the Portuguese forward's dressing room antics.
It seems Ronaldo, now with Spanish champions Real Madrid, kept a mirror by his seat in the dressing room and had a set routine before each match.
"Every match, before the team goes out for the warm-up, he runs through the same routine. The kit goes on, the boots go on. Not long after, Ronnie turns to his reflection and stares, psyching himself up for the game," Rooney explained, adding, "If there's one person with a -bigger self-belief than Ronaldo, I haven't met him yet. He's not shy."
"In England's quarter final against Portugal - Ronaldo's Portugal - I got tangled up with their defender, Ricardo Carvalho, and accidentally stuck a boot on him. It looked bad, but actually it was a total accident," the striker writes, "As I protested my innocence, Ronnie started waving an -imaginary card around, getting in the ref's face. The official pulled out the red and I was off. Then I walked to the tunnel, I knew I couldn't really blame Ronaldo for what had happened because he was trying to win the game for his country. Besides, in the first half I'd tried to get him booked for diving, so I was as bad as him really. But moments after my card, Ronaldo started winking at the sidelines, and to people watching the game on the telly it looked bad, like he was dead pleased about it."
The 26 year old also commented on the reaction to the incident, revealing that there was never any anger between the two of them and, in fact, both they and the entire United squad treated it as a joke.
"I knew what was in store, so when I bumped into him in the tunnel after the game I gave him a heads up. 'The fans will be going mad over this one,' I said. He understood, he's a bright lad. The truth is I like Ronaldo, always have done. He's a good lad and great to have around the dressing room. The United lads loved the drama, though. Everyone gave us stick and when we turned up for the first session back at the club someone even brought in a pair of boxing gloves, as if the pair of us were going to have a scrap before we warmed up for the morning. But after our first practice game together, everything was as right as rain. I could tell that we were going to have a cracking season."
Finally, Rooney also praised Ronaldo's wardrobe, indicating it was stacked with "super expensive" brands. However, he also stressed that his vanity aside, Ronaldo's biggest love was always football.
"He tells us he wants to be the best player in the world, that he's desperate to be the greatest. I know one thing: this change in Ronaldo hasn't come about by luck. He works bloody hard," Rooney concluded.
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