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Dublin: 15 °C Wednesday 20 March, 2019
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Coach: Ronaldo wore nappies while playing for Brazil

Former Brazil coach Wanderlei Luxemburgo has told Spanish media that his star striker wore adult diapers during the 1999 Copa America.

Image: FERNANDO LLANO/AP/Press Association Images

WE ENJOYED THE post-retirement love-in which accompanied Ronaldo’s decision to hang up his boots last week. One of El Fenómeno‘s former coaches, Wanderlei Luxemburgo, didn’t get the memo apparently.

Breaking with the tradition of praising the striker’s pace and finishing ability, the former national team manager told Spanish newspaper Marca that the talismanic number nine had to wear nappies when he represented the national team during the 1999 Copa America.

At the time, the Brazilian – who has often been dubbed “fat Ronaldo” – was apparently taking prescribed medication to help him with a weight-loss programme. Luxemburgo’s comments indicate that the side-effects of this treatment included what the coach has euphemistically described as  ”accelerated evacuations.”

Luxemburgo’s comments translate as follows:

Ronaldo was overweight coming into the 1999 Copa America so we tried to help him lose a few kilos. The Doctor prescribed him with something called Xenical which was effective but accelerated evacuations.

Therefore, to avoid incidents he was forced to wear nappies. El Fenómeno had complained a lot about having to play in these conditions but let me remind everyone that he scored goals like he always did.

Nappies or not, Ronaldo was more than capable of producing the form which has made him a footballing legend. He finished alongside team-mate Rivaldo as the tournament’s top scorer, bagging five goals in total as Brazil won all of their games en route to a sixth Copa America title.

“Real Ronaldo” hangs up his boots >

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Niall Kelly

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