Cristiano Ronaldo spoke in the mixed zone after today’s game against Sporting and analyzed the change of coach at Real Madrid:"Zidane has given the team a push in the right direction. I genuinely feel that players have more empathy with some coaches and less with others. This is the way it is with players as it with other people. I worked hard under Benítez, always thinking of the best for the club, irrespective of who was sitting on the bench. I’ve never had bad opinions about Rafa and he always did the best for Madrid. He had a different way of seeing things from Zizou. To be honest, and don’t ask me why but the players feel more empathy with Zizou.”
Does he remind you of Ancelotti? "Yes, his training sessions are very similar. He is a quiet type, a serious worker and good fun to be with. He has a good manner with the players and I’m content and full of anticipation. It’s an interesting time for me and the squad. We’re in good shape and working hard.”
Did the player have a role in getting him sacked? "Never, I really believe that never happens. As I said before it’s a question of empathy but the players don’t play that type of role. At least I don’t. apart from empathy, one needs to be serious about work. The players are far more excited now about working with Zizou".
Dani Alves: “I’d rather not give any free publicity to others. I’ve never spoken about him in my interviews. If I want to speak ill of a colleague, I’ll speak to him, rather than promote it through the media. Anyone who talks about Cristiano is on tomorrow’s front page”.
Messi: “We’re getting closer but we’ve always had a cordial relationship. Before the FIFA gala, when on stage, I acted as translator for Neymar and for him. I told them that I’d charge them later (laughs)”.
The vandalism of his stature in Madeira: “This is a simple thing. Some people love you and others hate you. My sister and I ordered for it to be cleaned up and that’s all there is to that”.
His kick out at Nacho Cases: “It was an instinctive reaction. I could have been carded for that. If I tried to kick him on purpose he certainly wouldn’t have got up. I shouldn’t have done it”.