Ronaldo hails focused Madrid after beating Barca in cup
Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo hailed his team’s continuing good form against Barcelona at the Nou Camp after they stormed into the Copa del Rey final last night.
Ronaldo’s brace set his side on their way to a 3-1 win, the third season in succession they have tasted victory on the turf of their rivals.
It earned them a 4-2 aggregate success in the tie after Raphael Varane headed the third before Jordi Alba’s meaningless late consolation.
“It was a very good game, we played very well,” Ronaldo told AS.
“From the first minute to the last we were very focused, with a great attitude. We played better than Barca, scoring three goals in the Nou Camp is extremely difficult.
“Lately whenever we play here we do very well. We play better here than at home.
“We must continue with this confidence. Most of the players like to play here and things are going well for us.”
Hostilities are renewed on Saturday at the Bernabeu in the Primera Division, in which third-placed Real are 16 points adrift of their table-topping arch-rivals.
“Beating Barca is always a source of great motivation,” said Ronaldo.
“La Liga is less important because we are a lot of points behind, we need to look more at the cup and the Champions League, but certainly we will go there to do our best.”
Ronaldo has scored on all six of his visits to the Nou Camp over the last two seasons and he said: “It’s nice, I’ll be in the history books of Spanish football.”
Barcelona’s acting coach Jordi Roura is confident his side will soon emerge from their dip in form.
Tonight’s result added to a 2-0 first-leg defeat to AC Milan in the Champions League last 16 as Barca, who hold a 12-point lead at the league summit, look like having to settle for that solitary trophy this season.
And Roura told Marca: “We must quickly forget this and focus on the very important titles we have to play for.
“Madrid were terribly effective against us. I do not think they were so superior, the differences were small details.
“We had dreams of being in another final and obviously it is a disappointment, but the message has to be optimistic.
“There is no need to reproach the team. We must have absolute confidence this team can depart from this rut.
“We have lost the cup but in the league, we are strong favourites. And we have the return match with Milan and will try to come through the tie.
“We have significant challenges in two special competitions and will fight to the end.”