Stephen Hunt 'regrets' not hitting Cristiano Ronaldo during a game
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"That could be a momentum shift."
Stephen Hunt was a guest on the latest episode of the House of Football podcast, and the former Republic of Ireland winger spoke about his run-ins with Cristiano Ronaldo.
Hunt faced the Portugal legend five times in his career, lining out against him when Reading came up against a great Manchester United team that won three Premier League titles.
The former Ireland winger said that he still 'regrets' not hitting Ronaldo during a game against the Red Devils.
Stephen Hunt 'regrets' not hitting Cristiano Ronaldo.
During the show, Hunt admitted regretting not 'leaving one on' Ronaldo during a match against the Red Devils.
The former Hull City winger, however, clarified his view, admitting that he may sound worse than it actually was.
"It sounds worse than what it is," Hunt said.
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"But I actually, I do regret it but at the same time, I understood where I was at at the time.
"He Cruyff turned into me blindly and I had an opportunity to take the ball off him.
"You know when you get that chance I can leave one in here, get the ball and man."
Hunt said that, in the days before VAR, it was possible to get away with reducer tackles, which always drew a big reaction from the crowd in the stadium.
He also said that his disciplinary record was relatively untarnished, and he sometimes went into these challenges to get the fans on his side and gain momentum.
"You can get away with it without VAR," He said.
"I actually just took the ball off him and I thought, 'Okay I could have smashed you there'.
"Back then, fans rise off their seat, and you can lift off and you can gain confidence throughout the whole stadium. That could be a momentum shift.
"Listen, I was only sent off twice in 22 years, but I always knew when I was on the edge.
"I always knew if I do this I'm going to get sent off, if I do this I'm on the line. I always knew when I'd get away with it."
Hunt also spoke about his recent close encounter with Chelsea fans at Stamford Bridge and praised an underrated former Ireland teammate who recently retired.
You can watch the full episode below.
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- House of Football: Haggling to get into League of Ireland games, Liverpool’s decline and Bruno Fernandes moaning.
- House of Football: Ireland’s glimmer of hope, selfies with Roy and the art of free-kicks.
- David Connolly recalls Roy Keane's blunder in first team talk as a manager.
- "In an ideal world, Man United would move David de Gea on this summer."
- Damien Delaney on Sam Allardyce's first team talk to the Crystal Palace players.
- Matt Holland’s classy response to Roy Keane’s infamous ‘God Save the Queen' remark.