Brazil legend Ronaldo has hailed Vicente del Bosque as the manager who best understood him.
Ronaldo played just one season under Del Bosque at Real Madrid before the current Spain coach was sacked in June 2003 and replaced by Carlos Queiroz.
"Who best understood me as a coach? Vicente del Bosque," Ronaldo told AS daily.
"He was very simple. All the players liked him a lot because he did things the way they had to be done, without creating many problems.
"The training sessions, the talks... With him there was no concentration on the home games and this for me was important, because it killed the players. It overwhelmed me and Vicente got that.
"And his talks were three or four minutes. I imagine that in the national team they are very happy with him."
Ronaldo, who scored 104 goals in 177 matches for Real Madrid, said Del Bosque was a model coach for the modern game.
"The time of dictators has been over for many years. Coaches have to earn trust and be more of a leader.
"They have to get into the player's head and make them understand what they think and make it more technical and fight for you.
"Was it a mistake for Madrid to sack Del Bosque? Yes, it sure was. And most of us knew it. Until this day I don't understand what happened.
"One minute we were celebrating winning the league and the next he was gone."