Paulo Dybala tells teammate Cristiano Ronaldo he is HATED in Lionel Messi's Argentina 'because of your figure, how you walk'
Dybala confessed to being “surprised” at Ronaldo during the pair’s time at Serie A table-toppers Juventus, where the pair have bonded on and off the pitch, despite the animosity towards the Portuguese in Dybala’s native Argentina.
The 26-year-old has been markedly more successful with club strike partner Ronaldo than he has at international level alongside Lionel Messi, the Argentina icon who condemned Ronaldo to third place when he won the 2019 Ballon d’Or.
“I said to him, 'Cristiano, in Argentina, we hate you a bit because of your figure, because of how you are, of how you walk,'" Dybala told the Argentine Football Association.
"The truth is that you've surprised me because I've found you to be different."
Ronaldo has only scored once against Argentina – a relatively innocuous equalizer in a friendly in Switzerland during a 2-1 defeat for Portugal in 2011 – but is unlikely to have endeared himself to South Americans who dislike his posturing this week, posing half-naked against a wall in a social media post showing off his ripped torso.
Dybala and Ronaldo drastically improve Juventus’s statistics when they play together, increasing the Bianconeri’s goal average from 1.5 to 2 per game, while helping Maurizio Sarri’s side win 15 of the 19 games when they have both been on the pitch.
There has only been one match this season in which neither player has scored when they have both played for Juve, leading to increasing numbers of questions about his differing relationships with Ronaldo and Messi.Also on rt.com Paulo Dybala risks wrath of Juve teammate Ronaldo as he's asked about Messi GOAT debate
The player with the rare distinction of playing alongside both of the game's current outstanding strikers has repeatedly praised his illustrious partners, although he moved to qualify suggestions that he questioned Messi last summer.
"I spoke about it with Leo because we're both very similar tactically,” Dybala explained.
"I didn't have many minutes at the World Cup or the Copa America but, at the same time, I always respected the decisions of the coaches because Argentina is very prestigious.
"I've never intended to criticize a teammate. I simply wanted to improve something that was happening.
“I would have liked my experience in the national team to be different in terms of achievements – to be able to make more goals, give more assists, have better results personally.
“Here at Juventus I always played, I won important things, I reached the Champions League final, I scored goals, and I think I need to give that [for Argentina].”
Ronaldo has urged his vast online following to stay active indoors this week as the coronavirus pandemic continues to spread worldwide and force the suspension of sport.Also on rt.com 'I could hardly breathe': Paulo Dybala details coronavirus struggle after Juve ace and girlfriend Oriana Sabatini infected
Dybala was one of the first high-profile players to test positive for the virus when he was diagnosed in March and has spoken about his attempts “not to despair” while feeling fatigued, cold and unable to sleep.
“I got tired quickly,” recalled Dybala, having seen Italy become one of the worst-affected countries during the global health crisis. “I wanted to train and I was short of breath. I realized that something was not working well.
“This is not a joke – you really have to take care of yourself. There are a lot of people who die every day here. Things are very bad.Also on rt.com Show and tell: Cristiano Ronaldo teaches kids to wash hands as star 'set to join fight against Covid-19' (VIDEO)
“They really cannot do more than the number of cases – that's why other countries have sent their doctors. People have to be at home until we can really get ahead.”
Dybala and his partner, the Argentine singer, actress and model Oriana Sabatini, have now fully recovered from the virus.