The Portuguese star claimed the club would be top of La Liga if every player was on his level after the defeat to Atletico, but explained himself to the dressing room on Monday.
Ronaldo regrets, says sorry to his teammates
Wednesday, 02 March 2016 04:44
Cristiano Ronaldo apologized to his Real Madrid teammates ahead of a training session on Monday and attempted to clarify comments he made following the derby defeat to Atletico Madrid
Some 40 hours after losing 1-0 to Atletico, Real's players were reunited on Monday in the Valdebebas training complex. Zinedine Zidane had scheduled training for 11 a.m. following a day off, and in the meantime plenty had been said since match official Clos Gomez blew for full time at the Bernabeu.
Almost all was negative, and much had to do with Ronaldo's outburst in the mixed zone.
"If all my teammates were at my level, we might be first," he said. There was also criticism for the club's medics, its preparations in preseason and the team's current performance, as well as a rousing defense of his own talent and statistics. The consensus was that Ronaldo had shown arrogance and disrespect to his teammates in his attempt to highlight his own performances.
El Mundo report that Ronaldo has now personally said sorry for his comments, which appeared to shift the blame for the defeat onto his team-mates.
The 31-year-old also apologised during an interview with Marca, in which he said: “I was referring to the physical level, not level of play. I am not better than any of my team-mates.”
"We had more chances than them and deserved to win," he said. "We know that the situation is difficult but we have to continue.
"We will not give in. When you don't have your best players, it is hard to win. If you don't have Karim, Pepe and Bale, it's more complicated.
"I like to play with Karim, Bale, Marcelo. I'm not saying the others aren't good players. For example, Danilo was the best player on the pitch today.
Without a doubt, bridges will need to be mended among the players in the Madrid dressing room, and this was a good start to a tough week. Wednesday brings a visit to Levante minus Marcelo, Sergio Ramos, Dani Carvajal, Gareth Bale, Karim Benzema and perhaps Pepe as well. On Saturday Celta Vigo comes to the capital, as a forerunner to the massive Champions League clash against Roma on Tuesday.
It is a moment in which the team's unity will be tested – and to see if Ronaldo's apology has as much of an effect as the outburst that preceded it.