Zidane: Two-goal Ronaldo 'the best in the world'

ShareClose Comments
The Portugal captain is still serving a domestic suspension, but showed no signs of a dip in form after superb display in the Champions League

Zinedine Zidane reiterated the importance of Cristiano Ronaldo after the talismanic attacker alleviated Real Madrid's goalscoring concerns with a trademark brace in Wednesday's 3-0 victory over APOEL.

Still serving a five-match domestic ban for pushing the referee in last month's Supercopa de Espana, Ronaldo showed few signs of rustiness by improving his Champions League tally to 107 goals.

Real Madrid 7/2 Champions League winner

The reigning Ballon d'Or winner netted the opener inside 12 minutes and added a second from the penalty spot after half-time to kick-start his side's bid for a third straight European title.

Ronaldo's strikes could hardly have come at a better time for Madrid after striker Karim Benzema was ruled out for at least a month with a thigh injury.

"He [Ronaldo] is the best in the world," Zidane told beIN Sports after the match.

"He is always there when we need him and he always scores. If he was luckier today he could have scored four.

"He is a key player for us [and] I hope he continues in the same vein."

Zidane also talked up the value of Gareth Bale after the Wales winger was whistled by some sections of the Santiago Bernabeu crowd upon his substitution in the 82nd minute.

Article continues below

Bale set up Ronaldo's opener and earned the backing of his coach.

"Bale is capable of playing in a number of positions and on the left he can do a good job too," Zidane said.

"He showed his flexibility. Today we started with Ronaldo and Bale as forwards and then he shifted. I am pleased with the side in general and above all the second half."

Next article:
MLS transfer news: The latest rumors and trades in Major League Soccer
Next article:
I-League 2017: Mohun Bagan and East Bengal's star studded sides stumbling against humble oppositions
Next article:
Uganda 0-1 Namibia: Ten-man Cranes lose to exit Chan 2018
Next article:
'He will be a sensation' - Merson excited to see Mkhitaryan join up with Wenger
Next article:
ISL 2017-18: Guimaraes gets it wrong as Bengaluru top the standings