Ronaldo was at the peak of his powers during his time with Barcelona . It took a £13.5m fee to take the Brazilian forward from PSV to Spain in 1996 as he opted for a Nou Camp switch over Inter Milan. He went on to bag a remarkable 47 goals in 51 games before a shock departure for Inter at the end of the season for a world record amount having establishing himself as one of the top players in world football. It took more than just an unprecedented fee to take Ronaldo to Barcelona – with club president at the time Joan Gaspart recalling how he ended up dressing as a waiter to secure his signature in a bizarre tale.
Joan Gaspart went to extreme lengths in order to sign Ronaldo
“The signing of Ronaldo was out of a film,” he told the YouTube channel Idolos. “There was a problem because PSV [Eindhoven] backed out of selling him to us and included a clause in his contract that cancelled the transfer if the player didn’t sign by a certain date. “The days went by and Ronaldo’s contract didn’t arrive, so Jose Luis Nunez [the president before Gaspart] sent me to Miami, where the Brazilian national teamwere based, to make him sign it.
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“I arrived and wasn’t able to see Ronaldo very easily. There were some bouncers at his door in the hotel and they had orders not to let anyone through. I couldn’t beat the two-metre-tall bouncers up because they’d have sent my flying with a single punch, but something occurred to me. “I managed to get a hotel waiter to lend me his bow tie and jacket and he gave me a tray with a Coca-Cola on it. I went up to the floor the team were on in the lift and there were two bouncers there. I told them I had a drink for Ronaldo and I went in. “I introduced myself to Ronaldo and he called his agent and told them that he’d been caught. I told him that we’d complain if he didn’t sign and, in the end, an agreement was sped up. We hugged on the bed in his hotel room and finalised everything.”
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