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 Posted by ESPN Staff
Oct 29, 2009

Cristiano Ronaldo: I'm not Real Madrid's "saviour"

Cristiano Ronaldo has dismissed any suggestion that struggling Real Madrid are dependent on him, insisting that he alone is not the team's "saviour''.

Ronaldo enjoyed a fantastic start to the season, netting nine times to help Madrid win their opening seven Primera Division and Champions League games, but he then picked up an ankle injury in the match against Marseille in September that has kept him sidelined for the last five matches.

In those games, Madrid have suffered three defeats, winning just once, and on Tuesday were humiliated 4-0 by third tier side Alcorcon in the first leg of their Copa del Rey last 32 tie.

Those statistics suggest Ronaldo's absence is being heavily felt by the Spanish giants, but the £80 million man insists Madrid are no one-man side.

"We're not going through a great moment but neither am I the saviour,'' said Ronaldo. "A team is influenced by many and not only one player. I'm eager to play and help my team-mates. I'm convinced that things are going to improve.

"Disasters like the one in Alcorcon have always happened in football, there's no need to go overboard. It's gone, we lost. No-one is happy, no-one expected it, the team didn't play well, but the world doesn't end because Madrid lost 4-0. We have to lift ourselves and learn from the defeat. The changing room was very sad after the loss, but little by little the atmosphere is improving.''

Madrid's embarrassment against Alcorcon and their current poor form has heaped pressure on coach Manuel Pellegrini, with sections of the Spanish media suggesting the Chilean could be sacked if the team do not beat Getafe this weekend and AC Milan in the Champions League next week.

When asked about Pellegrini, Ronaldo said in quotes reported by Marca: "I'm happy and when you are happy there is no need to change or talk of others. We have to talk about those who are here, not those who could come.''

Ronaldo, who will also sit out the Getafe and Milan matches, faces another test on his injured ankle next week to see if he might be able to return for the derby with Atletico Madrid or the second leg against Alcorcon.

The former Manchester United man also has international commitments to think about, with Portugal facing Bosnia-Herzegovina in their World Cup play-off next month.

"I would like to play the return leg against Alcorcon, but I have to be 100% ready, both physically and mentally,'' added Ronaldo. "Next week I will have a new test and I want to play first with Real Madrid and afterwards with Portugal.''

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