Plenty more to come, vows Real’s Ronaldo
sports Updated: May 30, 2016 08:47 IST
MILAN: Cristiano Ronaldo could not contain his pride after firing Real Madrid to their 11th Champions League success on Saturday with a decisive, and pre-planned, penalty in a 5-3 shoot-out over Atletico Madrid.
After two scoreless periods of extra time following a 1-1 draw, the city rivals were forced to spot-kicks. And after Atletico defender Juanfran’s penalty came off the post, Ronaldo sparked wild celebrations at Milan’s San Siro stadium after stepping up to confidently sweep his effort past Jan Oblak.
With 16 goals in the competition, Ronaldo has finished the top scorer for the second time after his 17-goal haul in 2014.
Although he missed out on matching his previous record, his pride was plain to see.
“An unbelievable night, to win my third Champions League on penalties again, to be the top scorer in the competition again, I’m so proud,” said the Portuguese star, who won the trophy with Manchester United in 2008 — when he missed a penalty in the shoot-out — and with Real in 2014.
“We work hard during the season to win this amazing trophy, so I’m so proud of my teammates, of the fans, families, of the coach. It’s my second year I scored more than 15 goals. The person with the season scoring record in this competition is me, with 17 goals (in 2014). And this year 16; or 17 with the penalty. What more can I ask for?”
Ronaldo, he appeared to suggest, was never likely to miss.
“To be honest, I was confident I would score, I said to Zidane before the penalties, ‘put me the last one because I feel I’m going to score the winning goal, and this is what happened,” he said.
“I’m so proud to score the winning goal and to win the Champions League again.”
Ronaldo capped the celebrations with the trademark removal of his shirt, revealing a still muscular and toned physique, although after spurning a couple of real chances, the 31-year-old admitted his performance was far from perfect.
“It maybe wasn’t the best one, but who played unbelievable tonight? No one. It’s tough. It’s the end of the season, you don’t have power in your legs that you have at the beginning of the season.”
Ronaldo, meanwhile, says there’s plenty more to come.
“I’m always there, in the top level. I still feel good, I still feel fresh, not tonight though!” he said. “I showed the team that I’m there. For the good moments and the bad. This is what makes me feel proud.”
First Published: May 30, 2016 08:47 IST