Claude Makelele celebrates his 48th birthday today.
The Frenchman was a wonderful player.
He played for the likes of Real Madrid, Chelsea and Paris Saint-Germain in what was an illustrious playing career.
Makelele won the Champions League with Madrid in 2001, while also winning two La Liga titles and two Premier League's with Chelsea.
In fact, he was so good that he had a position named after him, dubbed 'the Makelele role'.
The defensive midfielder is fairly short in stature - he's only 5 foot 9 - but he was extremely aggressive on the football pitch.
He was a 'destroyer' in midfield. He wasn't afraid to fly into challenges and there were few better than him at protecting the back four.
Very few got the better of Makelele but one man that managed to wind him up was Brazilian legend, Ronaldinho.
Ronaldinho faced Chelsea six times for Barcelona between 2005 and 2007 and on every occasion he came up against Makelele.
The Barcelona wizard was arguably the best player in the world in that time-frame, bamboozling players every game with his incredible array of skills.
And Makelele lost his cool with Ronaldinho in one match.
In March 2019, Makelele recalled how he threatened to hospitalise the Brazilian during a match.
“At one point in the game I went over to Ronaldinho," Makelele told William Gallas in a recent interview with RMC Sport, per talkSPORT.
“I said, ‘I prefer that you show good manners in dribbling against me because if there are any of those PlayStation tricks, I’ll send you to the hospital.’"
Ronaldinho seemed to be intimidated after the outburst.
Makelele continued: “Do you know what he did? He apologised and asked for forgiveness.”
Makelele wasn't tall in stature, but he sure was an intimidating character.
It goes without saying that Ronaldinho was not the only player that Makelele would have threatened on the football pitch.News Now - Sport News