It's only been a short time since Ronaldo retired, so most people are taking this time to remember his many joyous and masterful performances on the pitch. But former Brazil and Real Madrid manager Vanderlei Luxemburgo would like to tell everyone about the time Ronaldo was embarrassed about having to play while wearing adult diapers instead.
Luxemburgo remembers back to 1999 when he coached Brazil to their sixth of eight Copa America titles and Ronaldo had to play through the regrettable side effects of a laxative diet. From the New York Daily News:
“Ronaldo was already overweight, and we explored every possible way of making him drop some pounds,” Luxemburgo said, according to AS of Spain.
“The [team] doctor gave him medicine, Xenical, which was effective, but it also accelerated his bowel movements. So, in order to avoid any “incidents,” the player had to wear diapers, which embarrassed him.”
Even embarrassment and diapers couldn't stop Ronaldo from leading La Selecao to its then-sixth Copa America title with five goals - giving him Golden Boot honors alongside fellow Brazilian Rivaldo.
Ronaldo could have just left the diapers and let loose on the pitch like Gary Lineker admitted to doing in the 1990 World Cup. Still, it's slightly harder to make fun of a guy for wearing them when he not only helped win the tournament, but also scored five goals along the way. Slightly.
- Vanderlei Luxemburgo