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‘We’ve heard you keep the shirt warm for Beckham’: How Man United stars taunted Cristiano Ronaldo and why it worked

  • The Portuguese winger would get mocked for the way he dressed and his hairstyle by the senior stars upon arriving from Sporting Lisbon.
  • Ronaldo endured all the mockery and instead worked on his performances, impressing everyone with his work-rate in training and during matches.

In an extract from Guillem Balague’s book Cristiano Ronaldo: The Autobiography, it is written how the Portuguese winger was taunted by teammates in his early days at Man United and how he came out a better player from it.

“They would take the mickey out of his hair and shoes. His almost see-through T-shirts,” Balague wrote.

“His sunglasses. His teeth and skin. He quickly decided to have extensive orthodontic work done on his teeth and use skin-care products.

“’He overdressed for training,’ revealed Gary Neville. ‘But I look back and think: ‘Those were high standards.’

“Ronaldo would get vexed—the worst thing you can do. ‘We got a reaction from him, so we kept doing it,’ recalled Fortune.

‘If he’d just ignored us, I think we would’ve stopped.

Someone would say, ‘we’ve heard you’re just keeping that shirt warm for David Beckham. And ‘you can use his locker till he comes back. He’s not going to be happy when he comes back.’”

Ronaldo was also mocked for picking a locker that was directly opposite one of the changing room mirrors.

But the Portuguese winger endured all the taunting to work on his game and ended up impressing his teammates by conquering rondo sessions in training.

The rest, as they say, is history. He made 292 appearances for United, scoring 118 goals, and also helped us win multiple trophies – including the Premier League and Champions League!

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