Brazilian defender Marcelo has hailed Cristiano Ronaldo’s “amazing” dedication and calming influence on Real Madrid’s players after the Portuguese forward’s 100 million-euro move to Juventus.
The European champions confirmed on Tuesday that Ronaldo decided to end his trophy-laden nine-year spell at the Bernabeu to “start a new stage” in his life.
“Who would have thought, Chris? The time has come to say goodbye,” said Marcelo, who won four Champions League titles alongside his close friend in the Spanish capital.
The heart-felt message, posted on Instagram, provided an insight into the impact Ronaldo had behind the scenes on his Real Madrid teammates.
“I was by your side for almost 10 years. Ten years of happiness, good football, victories, defeats and marvellous moments. I learnt a lot with you. Your dedication is the most amazing thing I’ve seen in an athlete. All the best to you and your beautiful family,” the post continued.
“I will miss our talks before games when you correctly predicted the result, how you calmed us with your experience before finals and the guidance you gave to the younger players.
“I am proud of having played with you, not because YOU ARE THE BEST PLAYER OF ALL, but because of the person that you are. When I stop playing I will sit at a bar with a beer and tell several of our stories while showing our photos. See you soon.”