Fabio Capello’s Candid Account of Ousting Ronaldo Nazario from Real Madrid

Former Real Madrid and AC Milan manager Fabio Capello recently disclosed that he decided to part ways with Brazilian legend Ronaldo Nazario due to concerns about his weight and partying habits during his tenure at Real Madrid.

Ronaldo had joined Real Madrid in 2002 from Inter Milan and initially dazzled the Santiago Bernabeu with his prolific goal-scoring. However, by the time Capello took the reins in 2006, Ronaldo’s performances had started to wane.

After just over seven months in charge of the “O Fenomeno,” Capello made the difficult decision to remove Ronaldo from the club.

“In February 2007, I made the choice to let go of Ronaldo Nazario. He was someone who enjoyed nightlife and often encouraged his teammates to join him in partying. One day, Ruud van Nistelrooy approached me and said, ‘Sir, there’s a strong smell of alcohol in the locker room,’ and he was right. That year, Ronaldo weighed 94 kg. During the 2002 World Cup in Korea, he weighed 82 kg. I had advised him to shed some weight, but he reached 92.5 kg.”

It’s worth noting that Ruud van Nistlerooy later denied these claims. Ronaldo was subsequently diagnosed with a metabolic condition, which results in his body burning energy at a slower rate than others. However, it is also true that his partying habits were no secret in Madrid.

Ronaldo moved to AC Milan in the summer of 2007, where he had a mostly underwhelming spell, making just 20 appearances in 18 months. The Rossoneri signed him against Capello’s advice.

“Silvio Berlusconi once called me to seek my counsel regarding the potential signing of Ronaldo. I advised against it, mentioning his fondness for nightlife and his constant desire to be surrounded by women. Berlusconi said, ‘Okay, thank you, Fabio.’ The very next day, Ronaldo signed with Milan, and he didn’t heed my advice,” Capello recounted during a university event at Limec, as reported by Diario AS.

Capello is known for his no-nonsense approach to indiscipline, having also reprimanded Antonio Cassano for consuming chips before matches. When Capello encountered Ronaldo, the Brazilian star had seemingly lost some of his enthusiasm for the game, making their partnership an ill-fated one from the start.

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