- Van Nistelrooy played with Ronaldo at United
- Opened up on bust up with CR7
- But admitted he should have been more patient
WHAT HAPPENED? The current PSV Eindhoven boss joined the Red Devils back in 2001 from his current employers, and welcomed a baby-faced Ronaldo to the club two years later. Speaking with former team-mate Gary Neville on The Overlap, both admitted that it took time to adjust to the Portugal star's way of playing, although Van Nistelrooy admitted the spat between the two was "really blown up."
🏆 TOP STORY: Barcelona confirm Messi return talks
📣 HAVE YOUR SAY: Can Man City catch Arsenal?
🚨 MUST READ: How chasing Man City broke Liverpool
WHAT THEY SAID: "People talk about the Ronaldo situation a lot don't they," Neville began. "I was frustrated at the time because I was used to playing with David [Beckham]. It was telepathy, we knew exactly what he was going to do. Then Cristiano came and it was different. He was running everywhere he would dribble, he would be unpredictable."
Asked about feeling frustration with his new Portuguese team-mate, Van Nistelrooy replied: "'It got a bit out of hand with that situation. I think the way we are in a relationship Cristiano and I is fine, now, in general. It's been really blown up. It was an argument in training. That's the story but in the end we figured it out together and we moved on and the relationship is perfect."
THE BIGGER PICTURE: Indeed, the Dutchman went on to win an FA Cup and League Cup trophy in his three years alongside Ronaldo, before leaving to join Spanish giants Real Madrid in 2006. The pair enjoyed half a season together at Madrid in 2009-10, during which the Portugal international had matured considerably. But Van Nistelrooy admitted he should have been "more patient" with youngsters during his time at United, such as Ronaldo.
"It was a transition moment in the team with younger guys," he added. "[Wayne] Rooney came, Ronaldo came, young promising guys. We needed some time to adjust. I would also talk to me now if I was coaching. I would say 'this is a transition moment, you need to have patience with these young guys'. We didn't have patience."
IN THREE PHOTOS:
Getty ImagesGetty Images
WHAT NEXT FOR VAN NISTELROOY? Now an experienced manager, the Dutchman will lead his PSV side out in their Eredivisie return away at NEC Nijmegen on Saturday.