Real Madrid 1-2 Celta Vigo: Flop Ronaldo must step up

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Celta win 2:! at the Bernabeu

The 31-year-old forward looked rusty as his Real Madrid side slumped to a second defeat in four days. 

It was surely not the kind of result Cristiano Ronaldo was expecting to grace the night of his return, after missing out from Spanish Cup action for almost 48 months. The forward was rested for both legs of the previous round of games against Cultural Leonesa and subsequently, Sevilla in the last 32.

With the stakes higher this time and coming into Wednesday’s game at the back of a draw, the four-time Ballon d’Or winner was named in a star-studded squad. This decision clearly highlighted Coach Zidane’s objective of making the Copa a priority. However, his choice to include CR7 was far from being justified.

Ronaldo amiss in Copa game against Celta
It was a disappointing night for the Cristiano Ronaldo vs Celta Vigo

The Portuguese was nowhere near his best in Wednesday night’s encounter as Madrid fans looked on disappointed. The same Ronaldo that scored a poker against Celta in last season’s 7-1 battering, fluffed his lines and missed a clear-cut opportunity to put Madrid ahead in the first half. Even after Zidane’s rotating tactics to move him upfront as the main man, the 31-year-old forward could just not cope.

Is the ex-Man United man fed-up with Zidane’s attempt to keep him fresh for the season by making him sit out games? Is he distracted by his multiple businesses outside the field of play? Or again, is he bored or doesn’t care anymore since he has won it all? In as much as there may be some verity in the questions raised, Ronaldo has to get a grip and keep his head in the game.

Although Celta’s Iago Aspas was surprisingly running the show at the Bernabeu, a little desire from Ronaldo could have plausibly resulted in a different outcome. The number 7 icon just seemed like a shadow of the high-flying Cristiano Ronaldo we know.

The Ronaldo who dazzles with quick feet and blazing pace. The Ronaldo whose name induces fear and panic into defenders. That is the Ronaldo – or at least half that man – Madridistas were crying out for at the Bernabeu on Wednesday night.

A rare instance where "The Commander" can't hold his head high as he walks past stewards after Real Madrid's shocking loss.
A rare instance where “The Commander” can’t hold his head high as he walks past stewards. [Image credit: Zimbio]
Yes, he may decline as time goes on but it’s hard to believe we’ve gotten to that stage as of now. A 35-year-old Zlatan Ibrahimovic is proving to us this season that class is indeed permanent and age, is also just a number.

Manchester United striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic is ageing like fine wine. Here's a GIF of his header goal vs Southampton in the English Premier League. Assist by Wayne Rooney.

If Ronaldo continues to play like this till the end of his career, he will certainly not be remembered like he deserves to be, considering the era we are in! All is not lost yet as Los Blancos have a chance to upturn their fortunes in the second leg. So could Ronaldo redeem himself!

Far from being plastic supporters on this CR7 fansite, we believe in facing the reality and sharing constructive criticism for Ronaldo to get back on track. And, oh! While we are at it, someone please tell Real Madrid’s competent coach, Zidane, to stop experimenting with systems midway through the season because it will only brew crisis!

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Emmanuel is a very vibrant writer from Ghana. Young but not small. Humble but full of hunger to learn and confidence to achieve greater heights in the world of online journalism. Emmanuel is passionate about the Beautiful Game with special love for English giants Manchester United and their former number 7 icon, Cristiano Ronaldo. In his leisure time, he loves writing and reading practically anything; old notes, e-books, articles... you name it! The Accra native and devoted Christian also loves drawing, swimming, watching and playing football both on the field and via FIFA video games. At times, Emmanuel loves to find himself alone at the beach and in nature.

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