Cristiano Ronaldo is a leader and the ultimate professional, says coach Carlo Ancelotti
Cristiano Ronaldo can perform at the highest level for some time to come due to his professionalism, said Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti. Ronaldo has been highly criticised this week for his alleged unprofessional attitude, due to the fact that he celebrated his birthday after Real’s loss to Atletico Madrid.
The Ballon d’Or holder came under fire after he decided to celebrate his 30th birthday hours after a humiliating loss to city-rivals Atletico Madrid. The timing of the celebration has reportedly upset team-mates, club officials and fans.
Ancelotti, however, insists that Ronaldo is a leader in the dressing room besides being a perfect professional, both on and off the field.
The Los Blancos coach said, “He's a player with a unique efficiency in modern football, he has an extraordinary talent and he enjoys this with professionalism and a level head that is difficult to find amongst players at this level.
“Amongst the squad, he's a leader, he talks to all the members of the squad, especially the younger players. He's an important part of the squad as are Pepe, Sergio Ramos, [Iker] Casillas and Marcelo. If he keeps faithful with the passion he has, his career can continue for some time due to his optimum physical condition.”
Ancelotti praises Pepe but wants Coentrao to improve
Ancelotti also took the opportunity to recognise Ronaldo’s fellow Portugal international Pepe’s sense of team-spirit. He said, “He's a player with great professional application. If I was to draw up a list of the players with the best team spirit, he'd be at the top.”
“He even has a tendency to worry more about the rest of the team than about himself. I don't think he feels Varane is a threat, if anything he's a motivation for him as is Pepe for Varane.”
However, the Italian had some harsh words for his team’s third Portuguese international, Fabio Coentrao.
Ancelotti said, “One area he [Coentrao] could improve is his concentration and motivation levels. He doesn't train with the same intensity that he displays during competitive matches, that's something he needs to improve on.”