Cristiano Ronaldo declared that Manchester United FC have what it takes to win the UEFA Champions League after Sir Alex Ferguson's side made it five wins out of five by beating Sporting Clube de Portugal.
'We have everything'
Ronaldo's added-time free-kick completed a 2-1 comeback victory for the English champions and secured them top spot in Group F regardless of the outcome of their Matchday 6 trip to second-placed AS Roma. "In the next stage I hope we do the same job," said Ronaldo. "I think we have the team, we have the group, we have the coaches – we have everything to win the Champions League."
'A good chance'
United had not managed a run of five straight victories in Europe for five years and Ronaldo believes their current streak – they are the only side in the competition with maximum points – underlines that they are even stronger than they were last year when they reached the semi-finals, saying: "We have a good team, we have new players. I think we have a better chance than last year because we have more players with more quality. I think we have a good chance."
Strength in depth
United certainly have greater strength in depth than before and this was only too evident when Sir Alex sent on Ryan Giggs and Carlos Tévez for the second half, after they had gone into the break a goal behind. "Giggsy and Tévez changed the game and we played more on the offensive," reflected Ronaldo of a switch that meant a change of formation from 4-3-3 to 4-4-2. "[Sir Alex] was not happy but it was not just the boss, the players were not happy either as we have the quality to do a better job. In the second half we played well, we created chances and we deserved to win."
Respect for Sporting
After Tévez levelled the scores on 61 minutes, Ronaldo struck his fifth goal of this UEFA Champions League campaign to win the game. "It's fantastic not just because I've scored five goals but because United are top. We need to carry on like this now." Unlike in Lisbon, where he refused to celebrate his winner against his former club, Ronaldo – the 2007/08 competition's joint-top scorer with Zlatan Ibrahimović – did show his emotions this time. However, he explained: "Anderson grabbed me and said: 'Come and do something for your mum and family.' It is always difficult to score against Sporting because I like the team but the people understand me – they respect me. I respect Sporting but this is my job, my colour now is red."
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