Former England international says he almost punched Ronaldinho during drug-testing incident

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Former England and Leeds defender Danny Mill has shared a story about how he came close to punching Ronaldinho after their World Cup game. 

After Gary Neville was ruled out due to injury, Mills started all five of England’s games in the 2002 World Cup. This included a quarter-final match against eventual champions Brazil, in which Ronaldinho scored a stunning free-kick.

England lost the game 2-1, but the young defender’s night did not end there, as he and three other players were summoned for drug testing following the game. The three other players were Rio Ferdinand, Cafu, and Ronaldinho which led to a hilarious interaction between him and the two Brazilians.

Reminiscing about the incident on talkSPORT’s Drivetime, he narrated:

“I was lucky enough to get Cafu’s shirt.”

“It was bitter sweet. Me and Rio [Ferdinand] got pulled into the drug testing room after the game, which is never nice especially after you’ve lost.

“We walk in, Cafu’s in there, Ronaldinho’s in there. Ronaldinho had obviously been sent off for a debatable foul on myself.

“But he was laughing and joking, and to be honest he was a little bit much, you know?

“He actually came close to getting a bit of a right-hander… but Cafu was amazing.”

Ronaldinho was sent off for a foul on Mills

He added:

“Cafu was humble, very respectful, Ronaldinho was jumping around, laughing and celebrating constantly when there was no one else in the room – apart from the guys watching us have a wee.“It was a little bit disrespectful almost – whereas Cafu was magnificent and I just said to him, ‘Can I have your shirt?’ He said, ‘Yep, there you go, no problem’. He took mine… I’m not sure what he did with it. He’s not got it hanging on his wall, that’s for sure.”



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