'The day I met Cristiano Ronaldo' - Here's what it was like when a Portsmouth man met the Juventus, Real Madrid and Manchester United star
THEY say you should never meet your heroes.
But try telling that to the people of Portsmouth who have proudly shared with The News their stunning assortment of superstar selfies from over the years.
As we see out the third and hopefully final national lockdown, each snap harks back to the excitement of travelling for leisure or work we perhaps once took for granted.
Among dozens of readers of The News who shared the photos after a Facebook plea was Glyn Tookey, from Stubbington.
The 52-year-old once met Portuguese football superstar Cristiano Ronaldo at his property in La Finca, Spain, when he played as a forward for Real Madrid.
Mr Tookey, pictured right alongside Ronaldo, who now plays for the Italian Serie A champions Juventus, told The News: ‘I work in private aviation and had to visit him at his house to discuss his aircraft.
‘When I arrived I had to break the ice. I told him “I haven't come to talk about your plane, I've come to sign you for Portsmouth”.
‘He was laughing and said I remember when Manchester United played at Fratton Park and the fans were amazing, singing “let's all have a disco”. He was actually doing the the arms-up motion to the song.’
Ronaldo, 36, scored six goals and assisted two more in 12 games against Portsmouth as a Manchester United player between 2003 and 2009.
He was famed for scoring a stunning top-corner free-kick against the Blues in 2008 – the year he was named the world’s greatest footballer after scooping Fifa’s coveted Ballon d'Or trophy.
This month he became the first person to amass 500million followers across social media platforms Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Mr Tookey said: ‘In person he is an absolute gentleman. I gained a lot of respect for him.’