DIOGO DALOT revealed he was NOT impressed the first time he saw Cristiano Ronaldo live – as the superstar scored a brilliant goal against his favourite team.
Dalot was just 10 when he went to see Porto face Manchester United in the Champions League quarter final in 2009 at the Estadio do Dragao.
Diogo Dalot jokes he wasn’t too pleased to see Cristiano Ronaldo score against Porto[/caption]
Ronaldo’s goal help United beat Porto 3-2 on aggregate in the Champions League in 2009[/caption]
The game was won by United 1-0 – with Ronaldo scoring one of the most famous goals of his career, a 40-yard thunderbolt that flew past goalkeeper Helton in 1-0 win.
Defending champions United would progress to the semis with a 2-1 win in the second leg, before eventually losing the final to Barcelona in Rome.
Dalot, 22, told United’s official web site: “The first time I saw him was in Porto when he scored that goal from almost 100 yards.
“I was in the stands behind the goal and obviously I wasn’t too happy because I was supporting Porto but it was my first memory seeing him live.
“I tried to reach him when I was a kid and he was in the national team but my first memory is that game.
“Afterwards it’s watching him on the internet and videos like everybody else.”
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Dalot, whose club side play Leicester in the league on Saturday, has enjoyed an impressive turnout on the international stage with Ronaldo this month.
The defender, who joined United from Porto in 2018, set up the Portugal captain to score a goal against Qatar in their country’s 3-0 friendly win.
And Dalot, who made two Champions League appearances for his club this term, credits the former Real Madrid and Juve star for being influencing his career.
He added: “I’ve spoken many times about Cristiano – he was a big reference for me growing up and then having the opportunity to meet him in the national team, and now being his team-mate.
“It’s a very good achievement for me too because when you grow up you want to play with the best and, playing with the best, it’s a very proud moment in my career.
“My first memory was when he was at United, that’s when I learnt all about him and really liked the way he played.”
Dalot was rumoured to have fallen out of favour at United during the 2019-20 season, making just 11 appearances that term following the arrival of Aaron Wan-Bissaka.
However, the defender has played seven times across all competitions for the club this term.
Dalot says Ronaldo has helped inspire his planning for games[/caption]
And the player, who spent the 2020-21 season on loan at AC Milan making 34 appearances, credits Ronaldo with inspiring his own preparation for games this term.
Dalot said: “I think it’s the way he conducts himself and prepares himself for the games,” Diogo said.
“It’s another level. It’s special to combine the way you saw him before and now you can see him behind the scenes as well, and combine everything.
“It’s amazing to have that energy and that mentality, also, in the dressing room. I think he brings everybody up and that’s so positive for us.”
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