James McClean has “more stamina and power” than Cristiano Ronaldo, according to West Bromwich Albion captain, Darren Fletcher.
Fletcher described team mate. McClean as ‘probably the best athlete I’ve ever played with’, claiming the former Derry City star has more stamina and power than Real Madrid talisman, Cristiano Ronaldo - outstanding praise for the man who began his career at Brandywell Stadium.
“He’s probably the best athlete I’ve ever played with,” Fletcher told the ‘Irish Mail on Sunday’. “In terms of stamina, speed and endurance, he’s the best I’ve ever come across and ever seen.
“Ronaldo needed speed endurance for explosive goals, his strength and power. James is doing 12, 13 kilometres a game.
“He’s the best athlete in terms of stamina but combine that with his speed he runs at as well, he’s very quick.
“Ronaldo is a freak in other ways, I’d definitely put them up there, without a doubt, as the two best athletes. But they’re both different all the same.
“Ronaldo has probably got more speed and explosiveness in terms of jumping but James has got more stamina and power in terms of getting up and down the pitch. He’s the perfect midfielder to have in your team.”
Fletcher added: “He’s the epitome of 100 per cent. He realises how fortunate he is being a professional footballer. His background, he’s giving everything he possibly can to be the best he can be.
“He is always working on his game, practising free kicks and not just the physical side. He’s an example to everyone.”
Fletcher, who played alongside Ronaldo during his time at Manchester United, also revealed that McClean has ambitions to one day manage Derry City F.C.
He’s [James McClean] convinced he’ll be Derry City manager one day - that is his great ambitionWest Brom Captain - Darren Fletcher
“He’s convinced he’ll be Derry City manager one day,” said the Scottish international. “That is his great ambition.”