One lesson Januzaj must learn from his inspiration Cristiano Ronaldo

Manchester United prospect Adnan Januzaj is inspired by current Real Madrid great Cristiano Ronaldo.

Adnan Januzaj may well be the next incumbent of the hallowed number 7 jersey at Manchester United and the talented attacker has revealed he has been inspired by a legendary former wearer of the shirt, Cristiano Ronaldo, who is now enthralling Estadio Santiago Bernabeu audiences at Real Madrid.

"I watch him a lot and try to do the same things that he does," Belgium playmaker told Inside United. "He is a very good player. I always look at him and watch his games as well and try to do what he is doing and remember what he did at Manchester United."

When Ronaldo first arrived in Stretford, signed by erstwhile managerial don Sir Alex Ferguson for £12.24m in 2003, he was blessed with an abundance of footballing trickery, capable of hugging the touchline and dancing past a hulking defender, yet he had a slight frame and was accused of one-dimensional play - even though it was effective.

By the time Cristiano left Old Trafford six years later, he had been transformed by Fergie into the ultimate Premier League player. He was capable of playing across the forward line or even as a striker, he had balance, pace, precision, a work-rated that embodied Ferguson's graft and worked hard to become an elite-level athlete in his craft.

Ronaldo became a gym-rate, as Ferguson nurtured a transition in the player's body-frame. In 2009 - and also to this present day - he was no longer the slight, awkward-looking teenager he was when he arrived in England, but a powerful-looking 6ft, 1in attacker who weighed in at a light heavyweight 12 stone, 7-pounds of well-toned muscle - from his arms, pectorals all the way down to his hips and thighs capable of accelerating him into a completed dribble.

If Januzaj should be inspired by one thing, it must be this.

Januzaj has the talent, of that there is no question, but if he can make the transition from a slight-framed teenager into a physically-impressive man then he may well emulate United's former number 7.

"I have to work hard in the gym like he did because, when he came here, he wasn't strong," commented Januzaj. "But after a year or so he became really strong and could push people away. I'm getting a bit stronger now due to the gym work."

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