On the latest episode of Campus Sports’ online series, “Timeout,” we sat down with United States soccer superstar Jermaine Jones, who currently plays with the New England Revolution in the MLS.
Jones discussed a wide range of topics from around the soccer world from his World Cup experience to advice for young players, but he also pulled the curtain back to reveal some scoop on the sport’s best player, Cristiano Ronaldo.
While Ronaldo has his fair share of fans and detractors, Jones says people that really get to know Ronaldo understand the kind of guy he is.
“A lot of people see him only from how he acts on the field. He maybe comes off a little bit arrogant, like he’s a selfish player and stuff like that, but inside I think a lot of people can tell that he is a really nice guy,” Jones said.
Noting Ronaldo’s work ethic, Jones added, “Everything that he has right now comes from hard work.”
Jones faced Ronaldo during the 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil when the United States faced Portugal in the group stage of the tournament — the game featured Jones’ beautiful goal that snuck just inside of the post.
While Jones was focused on winning the game for the United States, he also had something else on his mind: get his boy a jersey.
“After the Portugal game, my boy asked me if he could have Cristiano’s jersey. I was like, ‘boy, that’s going to be tough. I think a lot of us boys are going to try to get that jersey.’ So, we played and then after the game I’m like, ‘hey, do you got a jersey for my boy?’ He said, ‘yeah, yeah.” Then he went back and got me the jersey,” Jones recalled.
As for Ronaldo’s club team, Real Madrid, it appears that he takes it upon himself to be a real leader on and off the field by welcoming everyone to Santiago Bernabéu with open arms.
“This thing that I heard was every guy who comes to Real Madrid, he tries to bring them straight into the team so they don’t have to be like ‘oh, I’m the new guy.’ He’s really cool.”
You can check out the full interview with Jones below: