Phil Scolari has revealed how he took on the responsibility of telling Man Utd striker Cristiano Ronaldo that his father had passed away.
Ronaldo’s dad passed away in September 2005 with the striker away on international duty with Portugal at the time.
And Scolari has revealed how his bond with Ronaldo grew from taking on the responsibility of informing the Man Utd star of his father’s death.
Scolari told the Daily Mail: “It was very hard. It was the moment that created a bond between us, a bond that surpasses the coach-athlete relationship.
“When the news got to us, before a game against Russia, nobody knew how to tell him and nobody wanted to.
“So I told them I would do it as I knew how it was to lose a parent. I had lost mine a few years before.
“It was very sad, but it’s the kind of moment that connects us as friends.
“The next day, Cristiano played a marvellous game and returned to Portugal. He asked to play. He said: ‘I can’t do anything for my father today, so I’ll play tomorrow and then I’ll go.’”
On his relationship with former Man Utd boss Sir Alex Ferguson, Scolari added: “We used to talk a lot when I was the coach for Portugal, especially because of Cristiano Ronaldo. I used to call Cristiano a lot, so Ferguson used to talk to me about how he was doing at Manchester United, the hard work he was putting in, all that.
“I faced him in the Premier League when I went to Chelsea. There is something very nice in England where coaches meet and talk after games. There aren’t fights, there is friendship. It’s very beautiful.
“After a 1-1 draw at Stamford Bridge, we drank wine and he made compliments, even about the drink, and we started joking around. When I left Chelsea, the first person to talk to the press about my time at the club was Ferguson. He was very complimentary and said I should have stayed in England. We still talk when we have the chance.”
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