Cristiano Ronaldo’s return to Manchester United has driven and inspired every single player in the squad, according to defender Diogo Dalot, who also bared witness to one of his best ever goals
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- 14:46, 12 Oct 2021
- Updated14:48, 12 Oct 2021
Manchester United defender Diogo Dalot believes Cristiano Ronaldo ’s return to the club has had an influence on everybody in the team.
Since sealing a sensational return to Old Trafford, Ronaldo has hit the ground running in his second spell, hammering home five goals in his first six matches.
And his fellow Portuguese compatriot Dalot believes Ronaldo’s influence stretches further than the pitch themselves, as the way in which the former Real Madrid and Juventus hitman prepares and recovers from football is inspiring.
Ronaldo’s focus on fitness, nutrition, and recovery is well documented, and Dalot feels it is this dedication which has blown away all of the Old Trafford stars.
Diogo Dalot said Cristiano Ronaldo has lifted everybody at Manchester United
"I think it’s the way he conducts himself and prepares himself for the games," Dalot added on Ronaldo's professionalism,” Dalot said to Inside United the club's official monthly magazine.
"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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Dalot has been at United since 2018, where former boss Jose Mourinho signed him from Portuguese giants Porto for around £18m.
After a productive two years under the now AS Roma manager, Dalot was loaned out to AC Milan where his performances at the San Siro impressed.
However, Dalot recalls the lessons and stories he was serenaded with about United’s iconic No.7 when he initially arrived at Old Trafford.
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Diogo Dalot has always looked up to Cristiano Ronaldo
"My first memory was when he was at United, that’s when I learnt all about him and really liked the way he played,” said Dalot who has made five appearances for United this season.
"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.
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"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."
Dalot was also in the stands when the legendary Portuguese star scored one of his greatest ever goals – not just for United, but in his whole career.
After receiving a pass on the half-turn, Ronaldo hammered home a thunderbolt from around 40 yards, which flew past the goalkeeper.
Cristiano Ronaldo Champions League tie-clinching effort against Porto for Manchester United, remains as one of the best goals he ever scored
And Dalot was there to witness this supreme strike first-hand from the stands of the Estadio de Dragao.
"The first time I saw him was in Porto when he scored that goal from almost 100 yards," Dalot joked.
"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."
Ronaldo continues to hit the net frequently for club and country.
He recently opened the scoring for Fernando Santos’ side, in Portugal’s friendly 3-0 victory against Qatar.
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