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Atletico Madrid were very defensive and do not play attractive football: Cristiano Ronaldo

But the Real Madrid forward also praised Atletico Madrid and coach Diego Simeone for their tactics

FEATURED COLUMNIST
News 16 Jan 2015, 15:25 IST
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Cristiano Ronaldo scored for Real Madrid but were knocked out 4-2 on aggregate

Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo apologized to all the fans following his side’s loss to Atletico Madrid in the Copa del Ray. The defending La Liga champions headed into the second leg at the Santiago Bernabeu with a 2-0 advantage from the first leg and all but sealed a spot in the quarter-finals thanks to a brace from Fernando Torres. Real Madrid did try to make a comeback into the fixture by pulling two back, but could not overturn the scoreline from the first leg.

“In the name of the team, I can only apologise to the fans, because we could have done better in the second half,” the 29-year-old forward told reporters after bowing out of the competition.

"I appreciate the support we received on the bus, and the reception they gave me before the game," he added.

Atletico were defensive in their play: Ronaldo

However, the 2014 Ballon D’Or winner did criticise Atletico’s style of play on the night, saying that they were a bit too defensive, but that tactic worked for them in the end.

"Atletico do not play attractive football. They are very defensive. They are always waiting for set-pieces, but it works well for them. You must respect their players and their coach," he said.

He added that it isn't an easy task to score in every game and said that he has now learnt how to play, despite battling an injury.

"You cannot score in every game, or be at your best,” Ronaldo said. “Tell me a player who always plays well. I am not from another planet. Maybe I am not perfectly fit, but I will be there.

“The knee issue is over, I have got used to playing with pain. In two or three weeks I will be fine, and the team too," Ronaldo said.

Giving away the early lead didn't help: Ronaldo

Ronaldo also admitted that conceding an early goal in the game didn't make matters easy for Los Blancos, but expressed happiness at the way they played in the first 45 minutes of the game.  

"We knew that they had an advantage, and the game was very difficult. We conceded a goal in the first minute. We knew what could happen.

“It was a disappointment to lose like this. I am delighted with the play in the first half. We could not play better. We showed our face. We had very bad luck to concede both goals so quickly," Ronaldo said.

He also said that getting eliminated from the Copa del Rey is only a minor blip and the side are doing very well in other competitions.

“You do not need to take anything away from the Copa, but La Liga and the Champions League are more important.We want to win, but we can take positive things from the defeats. They will help us to focus.

"Sometimes it is better to take a step backwards, to later take two forwards. We are first in La Liga and in the Champions League. Games can take their toll, and I hope that in two weeks we are back playing like before Christmas," the Portuguese star said.

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