Between 2009 and 2017, Cristiano Ronaldo played alongside his compatriot Pepe at Real Madrid.
The defender left Los Blancos in 2017, and the striker followed suit a year later with a sensational move towards Juventus.
Nonetheless, the two remained great friends, and together, they share a host of pleasant memories of their triumphs on both club and international levels.
This season, the two Portuguese internationals met in the Champions League round of 16, when the Old Lady was drawn against Porto.
Whilst Ronaldo was expected to lead the Bianconeri towards a comfortable qualification, it was Pepe’s side that came out on top thanks to away goals after a 4-4 draw on aggregate after extra time.
During the encounter, CR7 was caught by the cameras promising his friend that he’ll be the one to go through to the quarter finals.
The 36-year-old was later mocked for failing to deliver on his promise, but the defender reveals exactly how the small-talk went between the two men, whilst praising his former teammate.
“I admire Cristiano a lot, for me he’s the best player of all time,” said Pepe in an interview with TNT sports (via ilBianconero).
“Ronaldo managed to do what no one else did. He won in England, Spain, Italy, and even in Portugal. He was our captain, many people criticize him without knowing who he really is.
“Ronaldo was with me at Real Madrid when Casillas knocked me out twice. On one occasion Cristiano came to see me in the hospital, because he saw that my injury was a serious one.
“During the Champions League match, I told him ‘You will play because I want to win with you on the field’. Cristiano replied ‘Okay, with me you will win on the field, but I will be the one to make it to the next round.” concluded Pepe.