St Mirren star Jamie McGrath is looking forward to the chance to get some revenge on Manchester United superstar Cristiano Ronaldo when the Republic of Ireland face Portugal tonight – although he admits he had to check that CR7 was real last time they faced.
McGrath and Ronaldo met in the Algarve in September with the Man United star scoring a late winner and McGrath was taken aback by the Portuguese icon’s imposing stature in the tunnel.
After recovering from a hip injury, McGrath returned to action last weekend in the draw with St Johnstone and could now pick up his sixth cap for the Republic of Ireland later tonight.
“It’s still fresh in my mind from the last time we played Portugal,” the St Mirren star said [PDE].
“We will go out with the same plan and look to do what we did against them away from home.
“I thought we really competed with them over there, and with the home fans behind us at a sold out Aviva it will be a magical night.
“I had never really thought about being on the same pitch as Ronaldo until it happened, because you never think it would.
“So coming out of the dressing room and in the tunnel, when you see him at first he looks like a giant and, obviously, a million dollars.
“He’s very tall and can jump nearly twice his height as well.
“Once it’s on the pitch it’s different, you’re just focused on the game. Although I did try to feel him at one stage just to make sure he was real!
“I knocked him over once and he fell to the deck, so I thought I’d get booked because it was Ronaldo.
“I am really looking forward to it, hopefully I can be involved and get some minutes again.
“We will do our homework. Last time Ronaldo’s quality was too much in the end, but we ran them close.
“And this time we can only be better with the home fans on our side. I got an assist in the first game and I’d love to do that again if I get the chance.”
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