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Dublin: 1°C Sunday 7 March 2021

Rooney: Ronaldo loved his own reflection

Safe to say that Wayne Rooney is surprising absolutely nobody with these latest tidbits from his upcoming book.

Image: JON SUPER/AP/Press Association Images

WAYNE ROONEY HAS lifted the lid on his relationship with former Manchester United team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo.

The 26-year-old United striker, currently sidelined with a thigh injury, has provided a unique insight into goings-on at Old Trafford during the Portuguese superstar’s stay at the club.

In Rooney’s upcoming book, ‘My Decade in the Premier League’, extracts of which are being published by The Mirror, he reveals: “There’s a mirror by Ronaldo’s seat in the Old Trafford dressing room.

“In the time I’ve been playing with Ronnie, the one thing I’ve noticed about him is that he can’t walk past his reflection without admiring it, even if we’re about to play a game of football.

“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.

“If there’s one person with a bigger self-belief than Ronaldo, I haven’t met him yet. He’s not shy.”

Rooney and Ronaldo famously clashed in the World Cup 2006 quarter-final, during which England were reduced to 10 men after Rooney was red-carded following a stamp on Ricardo Carvalho and a spot of gamesmanship from his United colleague.

“When 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,” Rooney said.

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. ‘They’ll be trying to make a big deal of it, so we’ll just have to get on with things as normal because there will be talk all summer’.

He understood, he’s a bright lad, but not long afterwards the papers reckoned he was off to Real Madrid; apparently me and him weren’t talking, which was absolute rubbish.

The truth is I like Ronaldo, always have done. He’s a good lad and great to have around the dressing room.

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