“Cristiano said he will work hard, make himself better” – Rio Ferdinand opens up on how Cristiano Ronaldo defended in-form Manchester United star

Former Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand recently claimed that Cristiano Ronaldo was backing Diogo Dalot to eventually come good at Old Trafford. He said that the Al Nassr star believed that Dalot was working hard behind the scenes.

Speaking on Vibe With Five podcast, Ferdinand admitted that he was also impressed with Dalot after watching him in training at Carrington earlier this season. He heaped praise on the Portuguese star after the recent Premier League win over Aston Villa and said:

“Dalot needs a special mention. He is someone I doubted early on. I remember speaking to Cristiano Ronaldo and said, ‘Is he really that good?’ – and Cristiano said he will work hard, make himself better and 100 per cent improve. He saw it behind the scenes so he knew that. I said to Darren Fletcher when I was at the training ground the other day that he has really impressed me.”

He added:

“Darren said that he is a worker, he’s going to make himself the player he needs to be. I still think defensively he probably needs to work a little bit. But yesterday [against Aston Villa] I thought he was very good defensively. With the ball, that cross, if we have players running onto them, the forwards will make the runs and we will score more goals.”

Manchester United won 2-1 at Aston Villa on Saturday, with Diogo Dalot assisting the winner headed in by Scott McTominay. Meanwhile, Cristiano Ronaldo was playing for Al Nassr in the Riyadh Season Cup final and lost 2-0 to Al Hilal.

Manchester United manager heaps praise on Cristiano Ronaldo’s Portugal teammate Dalot

Erik ten Hag was also full of praise for Diogo Dalot after Manchester United’s win over Aston Villa. He said that the Portuguese star was a fantastic player and also versatile.

Speaking to the media about the right-back, the Dutchman said (via Mirror):

“Everyone gets criticism but he is a fantastic player who is developing very well. He can play in so many positions and he is improving on crosses. He can score, and his defending is improving, so I am very pleased with him.”

Cristiano Ronaldo left Manchester United in November 2022 after his contract was terminated by mutual consent. His explosive interview with UK TV personality Piers Morgan saw him criticize the club and the manager, which led to his exit.

Edited by Sankalp Srivastava

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