The Welsh winger limped off injured during the first half of Madrid’s 4-0 win over Shakhtar Donetsk on Tuesday night and went straight down the tunnel.
Cristiano Ronaldo made it eight goals for the week by scoring a second-half hat-trick as Real Madrid thrashed 10-man Shakhtar Donetsk 4-0 in their opening Champions League Group A match at the Bernabeu.
“We know that pre-season is less important, we know that we have to start the Liga and the Champions League well”.
“I feel very proud and happy with this moment”, Ronaldo said after his latest impressive performance.
Indeed, new Madrid coach Rafael Benítez could not have wished for a better European start with the Merengues and he reserved special praise for his hat-trick hero.
Early season fears that Benitez’s Madrid might not have the same attacking prowess as in previous seasons have been dispelled as Los Blancos have now scored 15 times in their last three outings.
“But this is not my goal”.
Manchester City fared little better than their neighbours as they surrendered a lead to lose their Champions League Group D opener 2-1 to Juventus, the Italian champions’ first win in England since 1996. So I hope my goals will help the team to win.
“I am not anxious, as I have not really had many [muscle injuries] over this time“, he said.
Ronaldo also had a dig at his critics following his quick-fire return to favour. “My teammates have always had confidence in me”. “We are in good form, we must highlight the work of the team”.
Real Madrid boss Rafa Benitez insists “there is no debate” over whether or not Cristiano Ronaldo is the best player in the world.
Shakhtar then suffered another blow shortly after half-time when Stepanenko received his second yellow card of the evening and was sent off, leaving the visitors with just 10 men for the remaining 40 minutes of the match against one of the best club teams in the world.
An Olexandr Kucher interception denied Ronaldo a one-on-one opportunity following a quick break within two minutes of the restart before Stepanenko’s senseless sending off prior to the hour mark.
The Portuguese is now also just two goals away from equalling club legend Raul’s record as Madrid’s all-time leading scorer.