Ronaldo confident of Madrid victory
Cristiano Ronaldo is confident that Real Madrid, with the help of their fans, will break with recent tradition and progress into the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals at the expense of Lyon this week.
Madrid have fallen at the last-16 stage of the Champions League in each of the last five seasons and they will need to overturn a 1-0 first-leg deficit to avoid a repeat this year. Manuel Pellegrini`s side played poorly at the Stade Gerland, but they have been in fine form domestically and Saturday's thrilling last-gasp 3-2 win over Sevilla saw them replace Barcelona at the top of the La Liga table.
The win against Sevilla helped maintaine Madrid's 100 per cent home record in La Liga with 13 wins out of 13 matches. Los Merengues are on a current winning streak of seven games and have scored 13 goals in their three outings since losing to Lyon last month.
A confident Ronaldo, who helped Manchester United conquer Europe in 2008 prior to joining Madrid last summer, said ahead of the visit of Lyon: "The team is in great form, we are playing at home and we can do better than in Lyon. I'm confident we can give a good reponse and that we will get through to the next round."
"We have to go out with a winning mentality and look to score goals. We didn't score in the first game, but I hope it will be different on Wednesday," said the Portuguese international, "We already know about Lyon, there are a physically strong team but now we are playing at home."
Ronaldo has urged Madrid fans to play their part on Wednesday. "Against Sevilla they were fantastic. I hope they are the same on Wednesday because that would be key to giving us confidence, to help us play well, and to win.
"With everyone together we have to show Lyon that in the Bernabeu we are in charge. We know that it`s difficult but it`s possible. We are going to do everything from the first minute to the last to get through the tie."
With this year's Champoins League final being staged at the Bernebeu, the prospect of winning the club's tenth European Cup title in front of a home crowd is an added incentive for Madrid.
"We all know that the Champions League is a dream for this club, who have nine European Cups and want the tenth, as well as playing the final here. I am confident that we can turn the tie around," said Ronaldo, "we are playing in our stadium and in front of our fans. It would be a isappointment if we don't, but I'm sure that we are going to get through."