Rio Ferdinand disclosed that Cristiano Ronaldo assured him not to fret about Diogo Dalot when he expressed doubts about the Manchester United star.
Despite initial reservations, Ferdinand has commended the 24-year-old full-back for his recent displays, acknowledging Dalot’s impressive form.
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However, as a former United defender, Ferdinand admitted he wasn’t always convinced by Dalot’s capabilities and sought reassurance from Ronaldo.
‘Dalot needs a special mention,’ Ferdinand said on his podcast on Monday. ‘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.
‘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 I thought he was very good defensively (against Aston Villa).
‘With the ball, that cross, if we have players running on to them, the forwards will make the runs and we will score more goals.’
Since joining Old Trafford from Porto in 2018, Dalot has amassed 139 appearances for United up to this point.