Cristiano Ronaldo: Ex-Man United star not surprised by Portuguese achievements

Cristiano Ronaldo: Ex-Man United star not surprised by Portuguese achievements

- Cristiano Ronaldo has grown to be one of the best footballers in the world

- The winger joined Manchester United from Sporting CP in 2003

- Ronaldo's hard work and dedication played a key role in his success says Louis Saha

Former Manchester United striker Louis Saha is not surprised at the achievement of former teammate Cristiano Ronaldo.

The 41-year-old who joined the Red Devils six months after the Portuguese star spent four seasons at Old Trafford.

And the duo won a number of titles together including the Champions League trophy at the end of the 2007-08 season.

In 2008, Saha left Man United for Everton but he has so much to say about the player he spent about four years with, saying: "He always improved but I would say that his ways never changed [as a person].

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"Throughout his career, you see the same dedication that he had when he was 18, maybe with less confidence as people were challenging him, and he had to prove that he was the best player.

"But to have that type of confidence to train, to work hard and to be consistent, no matter what people say, that was just an amazing skill.

"It was better than having talent because the way he was able to analyse, at that age, and grow and maintain those qualities - for me, it was genius.

He added: “You ask anybody - working hard when you have that much talent, not everybody does this. You can get complacent or happy with your level and you think you have made it. But he wanted it way more.

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To have the vision to see something way more, when you’re already at United, at his age, it’s really hard. He managed to do that and that’s why I respected him so much.”

Saha further revealed that Ronaldo was so confident that he came to him some time and advised him to wear more smiles on his face.

He said: “Even though he was younger than me, I remember he said to me: ‘Louis you need to smile more when you play’. When the kids say that to you, when you’re older and have more experience, you say: ‘Hang on a minute’. But I realised it was so true.

During his career, he could be cheeky in the way that he spoke to people, and people just could not understand and got frustrated because they were not in his league. He’s so above everybody that, when he speaks normally, it sounds strange for everybody. It’s amazing.

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His power and speed… the skills were one thing that are important in a career, but analysing when to do it - the timing and the precision - nobody can do that.”

Before leaving Old Trafford in 2009, Ronaldo had scored 118 goals in 292 appearances with three Premier League titles, a Champions League crown, and the first of his Golden Balls. earlier reported that Manchester United legend Darren Fletcher has recounted how Cristiano Ronaldo got absolutely furious after one of the trainers introduced a new rule to their routine.

The Portuguese star joined the Red Devils from Sporting CP in a deal round £12.24 million in 2003 where he won his first Ballon d'Or award.

However, before he rose to that level of competing with the world's best stars, the winger went through stages of training at Old Trafford - some of which were alien to him at that time.

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