Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Fergie's Tough Love as Keane and Co Laid into Ron

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Fergie's Tough Love as Keane and Co Laid into Ron

Article excerpt

SIR Alex Ferguson allowed players like Roy Keane to kick Cristiano Ronaldo out of training sessions in a bid to toughen him up.

The ex-United manager identified Ronaldo's potential to become an Old Trafford legend after handing him David Beckham's No7 shirt.

But he feared his development would be hindered by a tendency to hit the floor too easily.

Ferguson was determined not to see Ronaldo bullied by opponents - so gave his own players free rein to do so during training.

Former United coach Tony Coton said: "Ferguson showed what he thought of this kid Ronaldo by handing him the club's iconic No7 shirt when he signed him in 2003.

"But just as important was the gaffer's ability to recognise his weaknesses.

"One flaw was his habit of falling to the floor like a rag doll every time he lost a tackle. …

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