Cristiano Ronaldo used to challenge team-mates to press-up competitions in the shower as a youngster, according to Fonte.
Fonte began his career in the same youth side as Ronaldo at Sporting before reuniting with him in recent years as part of the Portugal senior squad.
And the Southampton captain has revealed the bizarre dressing room habits of the Real Madrid star that illustrated the competitive nature that has defined him for many years.
“He would say to everyone, ‘I will do more push-ups than you in the shower after training’. And he would,” Fonte told the Daily Telegraph.
“He would do more than everyone. It showed how competitive he is. He was so far ahead of everyone.
“I love [Lionel] Messi but Ronaldo is Ronaldo. He was only young and I saw him millions of times in the gym, after training, when everyone else had gone home trying to get stronger, trying to be quicker.
“His work ethic and desire to be the best is unmatchable.”
Fonte also hailed Ronaldo for his ability to deal with the fame that comes with being one of the best footballers of all time, labelling him as ‘an inspiration’ for his own career.