Liverpool star Diogo Jota has opened up on being inspired by Cristiano Ronaldo, revealing the Portuguese icon was his ‘hero’.
Ronaldo has enjoyed an incredible career with five Ballon d’Or awards, five Champions League titles, a European Championship and over 700 career goals for club and country.
The 35-year-old is a revered figure in Portugal and been an inspiration for many players.
The attacker will be hoping to play alongside Ronaldo at next summer’s European Championships and speaking in an interview with The Athletic, he spoke about his love for football and admiration for Ronaldo.
“From as far back as I can remember, football has always been my passion,” he said.
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“I remember when I was maybe around six years old, my dad signed me up for swimming.
“I’d ask him, crying, whether I could switch to play football instead because it was on at the same time. I’d much rather be playing football than be in the swimming pool.
“My earliest memories are from the 2004 Euros when Portugal reached the final and unfortunately we lost.
“I was seven and I remember it well. Football has always been my passion.
“Cristiano Ronaldo was my hero. At that time, he was 19 but he was already playing at the Euros with so much quality.
“During my childhood, he was at Manchester United and Real Madrid. As Portuguese guys, we always looked upon him as our main reference.”