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ESPN FC Posted by ESPN staff
Feb 26, 2014

Business as usual for Ronaldo and Real

Real Madrid crushed Schalke in their first leg of the Champions League, making a statement that they are one of the favourites to win the European title.

Cristiano Ronaldo insisted every Real Madrid player hit the heights at Schalke as his brace saw his side take a giant leap towards the last eight of the Champions League.

• Uersfeld: Three things
Champions League Gallery Photo Gallery

The Portuguese, back after serving a three-match suspension, notched twice -- a feat also replicated by Gareth Bale and Karim Benzema -- as Real ran out 6-1 winners at the Veltins Arena.

And though Klaas-Jan Huntelaar scored a spectacular consolation goal in injury time, it did little to dent a glorious night for Real and their 80 million pound man.

Cristiano Ronaldo put Real Madrid 3-0 up with his 60th goal in the Champions League.
Cristiano Ronaldo put Real Madrid 3-0 up with his 60th goal in the Champions League.

"I think that the team has played good matches this season, and this is another," he said. "Schalke weren’t at their best. We’re happy, because we’re close to the next round."

As for the potency of his link-up with Bale and Benzema -- all but one of Real's goals were either scored or assisted by them - he said they were in fine form. "The three of us played well," he said.

"The whole team played well: from Iker [Casillas] to the midfielders to the defenders, everyone did their job. We’re very happy with ourselves, because we played very well. The [Schalke] goalkeeper did well. But my team-mates help me and in the second half I was able to score two goals."

Ronaldo was ken to put the issue of his suspension behind him, but did say he thought it was unwarranted. "What’s happened has happened," he added. "I was frustrated, because I didn’t deserve a three-match ban."

And of the prospect of the Madrid derby with Atletico on Sunday he said: "We’re motivated; that’s the main word. We’re Madrid, and we’ll try to win at the Calderón."

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