Khabib Nurmagomedov has claimed that Cristiano Ronaldo informed him of his move to Manchester United a month ago, despite initial links to rivals Manchester City.
The Russian has been retired from the UFC since his victory over Justin Gaethje, and has been linked with a switch to the football pitch himself after pictures emerged of him appearing to sign a deal with Russian third tier side Legion Dynamo.
And the 32-year-old has been well-documented to be a huge admirer of Ronaldo during his career, who will make his debut against Newcastle United on September 11.
But Nurmagomedov has revealed that Ronaldo "let slip" his high-profile switch to United over a month ago, despite an initial switch to City being heavily on the cards.
"A month ago, he [Cristiano Ronaldo] told me that he was moving to Man United," Khabib said.
"I expected this deal to take place. I think that Manchester United is more suitable for him than Juventus. For me, the transition was not a surprise."
Ronaldo was a fan-favourite at Old Trafford after his tremendous spell in the Premier League where he netted 84 times during 196 appearances in all competitions, which helped him seal his huge £80 million switch to Real Madrid.
And Nurmagomedov has compared the Portuguese attacker favourably to legendary heavyweight Mike Tyson after appearing on his HotBoxin' podcast when he revealed he didn't like his "look".
"I didn't like his look. I told him right away to get rid of all the things like smoke on the table. I didn't like being there. I liked more the way Cristiano Ronaldo looked. He looks like an athlete," Nurmagomedov said.
The Russian has had many rivalries during his illustrious undefeated career, including Irish star Conor McGregor who he defeated back in 2018.
And he was forced to respond to deleted tweets regarding his late father, and labelled the 33-year-old "dirty".
“When he talked about this, only evil can talk about your father, wife, kids, religion,” Nurmagomedov said on Mike Tyson's Hotboxin' podcast. “If you’re normal human, you’re never going to talk about this stuff.
"For me, I think he post this tweet (while) drunk too much or (he was doing) something, then the next day, he always delete these tweets. When he become normal life (he looks at his phone) and says, ‘Oh, look what I did.’ Then he delete. This is my opinion what he do all the time.
“When someone is not with us – he is not even alive – this shows what you have inside. This shows how dirty you are.
"When you one of the best in the world and you come and you punch someone who is like 70 years old, like an old man (in a pub), this shows your heart. This shows who you are inside, how dirty you are."
The Russian has now cleared up his potential move into football, stating that "no contract" has been signed despite the links, but has revealed he has received a number of offers to play professionally in Russia.
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