Cristiano Ronaldo took his tally to nine UEFA Champions League goals on Tuesday – a group stage record – but it is Real Madrid CF's improving form that is getting him excited.
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Cristiano Ronaldo took his tally to nine UEFA Champions League goals on Tuesday – a group stage record – but he insists it is "winning games and winning titles" that he is interested in.
Ronaldo, who also missed a late penalty in Real Madrid CF's 2-0 victory at FC København, admits he is in good shape at the moment; more importantly, so are the team. Marcelo emphatically seconded both opinions and FCK pair Pierre Bengtsson and Thomas Delaney admitted the Spanish side were just too good. FCK's European campaign ends in a disappointment softened by pride in picking up four points in a tough Group B.
Ronaldo, Real Madrid forward
It was very important for us to remain unbeaten in the group. We played very well. We knew it would be a difficult game on a difficult playing surface, but we tried, and we played very well. It has been a good group stage for us. The group was pretty tough, with good teams. We realised our goal, to go through as group winners. Let's see what happens in the next round.
I'm happy with the record. I have scored another goal and I have helped the team. I'm happy with that. It is just a record, though, and to be honest I don't worry too much about that. I just think about winning games and winning titles.
As I have been sidelined for a couple of weeks, I have to get back into the rhythm. I feel good, but I'm not at my best physically. I am really enjoying my football at the moment. My own play is more fluent, and I have to continue like this, but I know that the season is very long. I have not felt good in all matches, but today I played well, and I want to enjoy that. We are playing well as a team right now. We play some good football, attractive football, and have a lot of confidence.
Marcelo, Real Madrid defender
We are playing well at the moment and our aim is to win every match and continue to show Real Madrid in a favourable light. Over the past five or six matches we have really improved. We are much better now. Of course, there are always things we can improve, but we are much better now than we were just a few matches ago.
Right now, Cristiano Ronaldo is for me, and I think for many other people, the best. For a long time he has been at the same level. He scores goals and plays impressively. The guys up front put a lot of pressure on opponents, and that gives us [defenders] more space and more chance to relax.
Pierre Bengtsson, København defender
The two goals they scored were a bit annoying, because in the second half we created chances and it was a shame that we didn't score; but we were up against a world-class team today. We felt that we could get back into the game. If we had made it 2-1, I think everything would have fallen into place. It was annoying that they scored so quickly in the second half, but that's football.
They kept the ball very well. That made it very difficult for us. In the other two Champions League home matches this season, we had the ball a bit more.
We are obviously disappointed that we didn't manage to extend our European campaign, but I still think that we can be proud that we have picked up four points in such a tough group. We have very good foundations to build on. Hopefully we will be back next season.
Thomas Delaney, København midfielder
We actually played OK, but we allowed them too many chances. The first half was difficult – they had the ball too much. In the second half we created a bit and the second half passed as we wanted. We got a few situations where we had the chance to score but didn't take them. Real Madrid are just better than us – in every position – and we felt that, especially in one-on-one situations, they really hit us.
I'm disappointed right now. Our aim was to qualify for European matches after Christmas. To achieve four points in this group was honourable, but we hoped for more.