Carlo Ancelotti says that talent coupled with professionalism is why Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo has been one of the best players in the world for the past decade.

The Italian coach worked with the Portugal international during his two-year spell in charge at the Santiago Bernabeu, with the pair lifting the Champions League together at the end of Ancelotti’s first season at the helm, in May 2014.

The 56-year-old formed a strong bond with Ronaldo, explaining that he found it impossible not to be impressed with the three-time Ballon d’Or winner’s work ethic and exemplary attitude.

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“Ronaldo’s a fantastic player,” Ancelotti told Goal. “It was a pleasure to be his manager for two years. We had a fantastic relationship — not only as a player, but as a person. He’s a really, really serious and professional player. He’s focused every single day, every single match, every single training [session].

“The professionalism of Cristiano helps him to be at the top. He has spent a long time at the top and the reason is because he’s really, really professional and — of course — really talented. But he supports his talent with really, really professional mood.”