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Despite the fierce football rivalry between their two nations, Ronaldo said that he had a genuine friendship with Maradona, who died in November at the age of 60.
"Diego left an incredible legacy in football. His loss is very hard to take. The news caught me by surprise and left me very sad," said Ronaldo, now president of Spanish club Real Valladolid, in a press conference per The Mirror.
The 44-year-old also explained why Maradona was regularly seen wearing with two watches, one on each wrist. A look that came to wider attention when he was Argentina manager during the 2010 World Cup.
"One of the first times he came to visit me in Madrid we had dinner," said Ronaldo, which already sounds like the start of a terrific evening.
"Diego brought two watches and the legend went that he did not go anywhere without them both.
"I asked him why he wore two, and he said that his daughter had given them to him as a present and since then he had never taken them off."
Makes sense, although the watches did often seem very similar in style. Clearly Maradona's daughter just knew her dad's taste. However that wasn't the end of Ronaldo's tale.
"At the end of the meal he took one off and gave it to me as a gift," the striking great added. "I didn't want to accept it, but he got angry and I was left with no choice.
"I will look after it for the rest of my life as a reminder of his generosity and friendship."
What a wonderful gift from one World Cup winner to another (although let's hope it wasn't the one Diego's daughter gave him or else he'd have had some explaining to do).
Tributes have been paid across the football world for Argentina's iconic No 10. But for Brazil's eternal R9, all he has to do is check the time to get a reminder of Maradona.
"I want to send my love to his family," said Ronaldo. "He changed the lives of many people and I will always be eternally grateful for the inspiration he provided me."
Featured image credit: PA Images
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