Wednesday 19 June 2019

Roy Keane: Cristiano Ronaldo sealed United move because John O'Shea played like a f**king clown

Roy Keane has revealed how Cristiano Ronaldo fast-tracked his move to Manchester United by humiliating John O'Shea in a pre-season friendly.

Ronaldo completed a £12.26m move to Old Trafford in 2003 after he starred for Sporting Lisbon in a friendly against Manchester United.

In his new autobiography 'The Second Half', Keane has revealed the part played by his fellow Irishman John O'Shea in sealing the deal for the current Ballon d'Or holder.

“We were playing Sporting Lisbon to celebrate the opening of their stadium,” Keane said. “I saw how good Ronaldo was that day.

“He was up against John O’Shea. Sheasy ended up seeing the doctor at half time because he was actually having dizzy spells.

“The club concluded negotiations after the game and we always joked with Sheasy he had actually sealed the deal by playing like a f------ clown.

“In fairness to him, he was jet-lagged [from America] like the rest of us.”

Read more: Extracts from Roy Keane's new book revealed: I never should have apologised to Alex Ferguson

Ronaldo was criticised in his early days at United for his individualistic approach and accusations of diving but the former Ireland and Manchester United captain insists that the Portuguese youngster was a model professional during his time at Old Trafford.

“I liked Ronaldo straight away,” Keane said. “He had a nice presence about him and a good attitude.

“After watching him train for a few days I thought: “This lad is going to be one of the best players in the world.”

“He was seventeen, but he was immediately one of the hardest working players at United.

“He was good looking and he knew it. Looking at some of the other players in front of the mirror I would think: ‘You f------ nugget’.

“But Ronaldo had an innocence to him and a niceness.”

Online Editors

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