With Ronaldo missing, Madrid look for Bale out

The onus has centered on Gareth Bale to lead Real Madrid’s strikeforce in the absence of the suspended Cristiano Ronaldo, when Real Sociedad visit in the Spanish league on Saturday. Ronaldo was suspended for two games on Wednesday for lashing out with a kick and punch against Cordoba last weekend.

Also, Barcelona need to win against a Villarreal on Sunday if it is to stay on Madrid’s tail. Defending champions Atletico Madrid travel to the tiny 5,000-seat Ipurua town stadium, where promoted Eibar have been enjoying a successful first season.

Without Ronaldo around, Bale has a chance to earn a little more of the spotlight. The attacking midfielder has scored in the last three league games, and in Real Madrid’s last seven wins. He has also scored in his last two games against Real Sociedad. Madrid are unbeaten in their last 12 home matches, a run that includes 11 wins.

Sociedad coach David Moyes’ strategy of defending tightly and breaking out on swift counterattacks paid rich dividends with a win against Barcelona on January 4. A victory against Madrid would make a remarkable double for the coach, giving Sociedad a massive confidence boost and lending credibility to Moyes’ tactics.

Having emerged victorious 3-2 from a bruising Copa del Rey clash at Atletico, Barcelona face little respite from Villarreal. Despite their attacking might, Barcelona managed only a 1-0 win against Villarreal in their last league encounter, and Villarreal have risen to sixth in the standings. Villarreal are unbeaten in their last 16 matches in all competitions in a run going back to early November, although the last time they won at the Camp Nou was in March 2008.

If Lionel Messi continues his marksmanship at home, he will have scored in eight successive matches at the Camp Nou, another personal record. Atletico travels to Eibar after that crushing Copa quarterfinal exit. Atletico finished with nine men. The implosion could have been worse had the normally even-tempered Arda Turan been red-carded for throwing a boot at a linesman.

Cristiano Ronaldo handed two-match ban for violent conduct

Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo was handed a two-game suspension by La Liga committee after racking up a red card on Saturday against Cordoba.

Ronaldo will miss matches against Real Sociedad on Saturday and Sevilla on next Wednesday. Real Madrid does have the option to appeal, however, although it’s unlikely the club will.

Full Video: Cristiano Ronaldo Red Card against Cordoba

Ronaldo was lucky to avoided a three-game suspension, which some thought he was in for due to the egregious nature of his actions — he kicked Edimar and punched Jose Crespo in the face.

Referee Alejandro Jose Hernandez did not write Ronaldo up for his swing at Crespo in the match report, only his kick to Edimar, which allowed the 29-year-old to avoid a violent conduct charge, which would’ve benched him for one of La Liga’s most anticipated games of the season — the derby between Real Madrid and Atletico Madrid.

In Ronaldo’s defense, at least he apologized for his barbaric behavior immediately after the match last Saturday.

The two-match ban won’t affect Ronaldo’s ranking this season as the top goal-scorer in La Liga. The FIFA Ballon d’Or winner has 28 goals in La Liga play this year, while second- and third-place scorers Lionel Messi and Neymar, both of Barcelona, still trail with 21 goals and 14 goals, respectively.

Newly Single Cristiano Ronaldo Seems To Be Doing Quite Well After His Break-Up From Irina Shayk

I’ve gotta say, I’m still kind of sad that Cristiano Ronaldo and Irina Shayk called it quits.

Sure we rarely saw them together, but it was nice to know that they were still a thing. Well, luckily it seems they’re both doing well after the breakup. While we haven’t seen much of Irina, we did get some Cristiano in Madrid today.

He looks put together, mildly happy, not weeping–much better than loads of other people (myself) I know after breakups. But he does have Cristiano Jr. to make him happy.

And judging by the fact that Cristiano is already linked to Spanish news reporter Lucia Villalon AND Irina wasn’t with him when he won the Ballon d’Or, maybe they’ve been broken up for awhile.

Side note: do you follow Cristiano on Instagram? Cause sometimes he posts cute stuff like this.

Ronaldo posted this recently on Instagram! In which Junior has mixed Iron Man and Batman pajamas–giving the love to Marvel and DC! while cristiano having a good father-son time.

Well Cristiano, good luck with your future relationships. If you could go on a beach vacation to drown your sorrows and post shirtless pics, we would be grateful.

Cristiano Ronaldo: ‘Lionel Messi’ rivalry inspires me to improve

Cristiano Ronaldo has admitted that competing with Lionel Messi for the title of the world’s best footballer is a motivating factor for him.

In addition, the Real Madrid superstar says he strives for perfection so he is able to continue developing and improving as a player.

I’m sure the competition between us is sufficient motivation and it’s the same for him too,” maintained the Portuguese in an interview with France Football.

It’s good for me, for him and for other players who are eager to improve themselves. Messi has four Ballon d’Or awards while I have three. That’s good for the world of football.

Personally, if I’m able to play 60 games a season it’s because I look after myself. I eat well and sleep well, so in these ways I seek perfection. If not, I couldn’t keep this rhythm of playing up.”

Ronaldo also says he is constantly looking at improving the technical aspect of his game.

I’m currently trying to improve my left foot, my acceleration and my direct free-kicks, which I’ve not had a great deal of success with lately.

However, I know it will come back. It’s a question of having enough humility to know that without putting the work in during training then things won’t progress,” he explained.

Photos: Cristiano picking up his son from School (Jan 20, 2015)

Read Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo is everyone’s favorite but he’s also favorite of his son not because he is the Best footballer in the world but because he does everything what a great father does for his son.

Ronaldo always tries to give his son more time whenever he is free. Cristiano seen picking up his son from school yesterday on January 20th and it is not the first time, he always takes his son to school and pick him from there whenever he gets time.

Recently, after his breakup with his longtime girlfriend Irina Shayk he is not changed a bit. Like a great father what he actually is, The Ballon D’Or winner giving his full time to his son Cristiano Jr.

In Pictures: Cristiano picking up his son from school (Click on Icons Below for Preview)
Fortsätt läsa Photos: Cristiano picking up his son from School (Jan 20, 2015)

Cristiano Ronaldo confirms end of his longtime relationship with Irina Shayk

Portugal and Real Madrid soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo confirmed Tuesday he has broken up with his longtime girlfriend, Russian model Irina Shayk.

After dating for five years, my relationship with Irina Shayk has come to an end,” Ronaldo said in a written statement sent exclusively to The Associated Press. ”We believed it would be best for both of us to take this step now.”

Ronaldo said he was making the statement to end speculation about their relationship, and to end recent rumours about his private life. He did not specify the rumours, but media in Portugal have reported that Shayk fell out with members of Ronaldo‘s family, and that he was seeing another woman.

I wish Irina the greatest happiness,” Ronaldo said.

He gave no further details in the brief statement.

The couple, both 29, has had huge international success, and their relationship has featured in newspapers and magazines worldwide. They were not believed to be living together, as Ronaldo was based in the Spanish capital while Shayk travelled extensively.

Ronaldo recently picked up the Ballon d’Or after being voted the world’s best player, but Shayk did not accompany him to the ceremony in Zurich. Her absence triggered rumours that their relationship was over. The couple remained silent despite days of intense media speculation.

Ronaldo retained football’s highest individual honour after scoring 61 goals last year. His record tally of 17 in a Champions League season helped Madrid win an unprecedented 10th European Cup title.

Born in the Portuguese island of Madeira, Ronaldo played as a teenager for Sporting Lisbon before moving to Manchester United in 2003. He transferred to Real Madrid in 2009, building his reputation and his wealth through endorsements and sponsorships. He has millions of followers on social media.

Ronaldo has a 4-year-old son, called Cristiano Junior, but he has never disclosed the mother’s identity.

Shayk won international fame as a Sports Illustrated swimsuit model, and a lingerie model. She made her acting debut last year opposite Dwayne ”The Rock” Johnson in the film ”Hercules.”

Cristiano Ronaldo and Irina Shayk call it quits

The world’s most beautiful couple has called it quits. Russian model Irina Shayk and Real Madrid soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo have ended their five-year relationship, Shayk’s rep confirmed it.

We can confirm Irina Shayk has ended her relationship to Cristiano Ronaldo,” her rep told in an exclusive interview on friday.

 

Rumors of a split first broke this week after Shayk was not by Ronaldo’s side at the annual FIFA Ballon d’Or in Zurich on Monday. Instead, he appeared at the awards event with his mother, Maria Dolores dos Santos Aveiro, and young son, Cristiano Jr., whom he fathered with an unidentified woman.

Some believed the couple had split up after Shayk didn’t show up to Ronaldo’s mother’s 60th birthday party on New Year’s Eve.

 

But a rep for the top model told us, “She has been close with his family throughout the course of their relationship. Any negative rumors with regards to Irina and the Ronaldo family are completely false, and have not been a factor in the cause of the spilt. Irina has no further comment at the time.

The Russian beauty, who was on the cover of the 2011 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, and Ronaldo had been dating since 2010, after meeting on the set of an Armani ad.

The ridiculously hot couple quickly became an item, documenting their travels around the world on social media, and posed for a hot cover of Vogue Spain’s June issue, with Ronaldo standing naked behind a clothed Shayk.

But the ex-lovebirds, both 29, noticeably spent New Year’s apart, and Shayk also posted photos of herself alone around her Jan. 6 birthday while Ronaldo was in Madrid.

Trouble might have been brewing over the summer when Ronaldo missed the July premiere of Shayk’s action movie “Hercules,” in which she starred opposite Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. A week later, Ronaldo was spotted partying in Vegas while Shayk was on Fire Island hanging with pals.

England boss overlooks Ronaldo in Ballon d’Or ballot

England manager Roy Hodgson has come in for criticism after it was revealed he didn’t vote for Cristiano Ronaldo in his Ballon d’Or ballot.

While the Real Madrid star still managed to comfortably win this year’s player of the year award, questions have still been asked as to how Hodgson could not have Ronaldo, or Barcelona star Lionel Messi, in his top three selections.

Overlooking Ronaldo and Messi, Hodgson instead opted to use his picks to select Argentina midfielder Javier Mascherano as his best player of the year, using his two other choices to select Germany duo Philipp Lahm and Manuel Neuer.

England captain Wayne Rooney disagreed with his manager, though, voting for former Manchester United team-mate Ronaldo as his first pick, with Germany’s Toni Kroos in second and Gareth Bale in third.

In contrast to his English counterpart, Scotland boss Gordon Strachan did vote Ronaldo as his player of 2014 ahead of Spain striker Diego Costa and Holland winger Arjen Robben.

Scotland captain Scott Brown, whose Celtic side are still overwhelming title favourites with the Scottish football betting despite their issues this season, saw things the same way as Strachan, using his first pick on Ronaldo with Robben in second and Neuer third.

Wales head coach Chris Coleman, perhaps unsurprisingly, gave his vote to compatriot Bale, naming Ronaldo and Germany midfielder Bastian Schweinsteiger as his other selections. Bale’s case was helped further after receiving the vote of his captain, Ashley Williams, although it wasn’t enough for Bale to break into the top three of the vote.

Northern Ireland suffered a slight embarrassment when their votes failed to be submitted in time, meaning head coach Michael O’Neill and captain Steven Davis’ selections weren’t counted.

But while there were some questionable votes from some aspects of the panel, not least Hodgson, Ronaldo was the clear winner in this year’s event with 37.66% of the votes.

That made it back-to-back Ballon d’Or awards for Ronaldo and winning the prize for the third time in his career. He came out on top in the votes made by the 181 national team head coaches, 182 national team captains and 181 media representatives that make up the electorate.

Lionel Messi finished second with 15.76% of the votes after another record-breaking season, with Germany’s World Cup winning goalkeeper, Manuel Neuer, taking third place with 15.72%.

On the back of an incredible 2014, there weren’t many outside the voting panel who really felt anyone else but Ronaldo deserved the award. Even Messi’s most ardent fans couldn’t argue the Argentinean performed better than his long-time rival last year, and there is an argument to claim his second place finish was more down to his name than his form in 2014.

While Germany’s World Cup heroes were all rightfully in and around the mix, only Neuer could have realistically challenged Ronaldo for this year’s Ballon d’Or. The Bayern Munich man has not only established himself as the best in the world at the moment, but some feel we are currently witnessing the finest goalkeeper to have ever played the game. The year of 2014 certainly went some way to cementing that opinion.

Cristiano Ronaldo given diamond-encrusted Nike CR7 boots after Ballon d’Or win

Nike have outdone themselves in honour of Cristiano Ronaldo once again. This time it is for his third Ballon d’Or Award.

They’ve designed new Mercurial CR7 Rare Gold boots which Cristiano Ronaldo will wear on Thursday for the Copa del Rey’s crucial game against Atletico de Madrid.

Nike have included micro-diamonds for the first ever time in their history, adding diamonds by hand to the CR7 logo.

The designers have cited Ronaldo’s room for improvement as inspiration for the incredible new boots.

He was training in his brand new boots today.

Cristiano Ronaldo presents his 3rd Golden Ball to Teammates in Training

Cristiano Ronaldo returned to training at Real Madrid a hero after winning the Ballon d’Or award for a second successive year.

Video: Cristiano Ronaldo Shows off his Golden Ball in Training 

The Portuguese superstar showed off the shiny golden award to coach Carlo Ancelotti and his team-mates after seeing off competition from Lionel Messi and Manuel Neuer to win the world’s best player crown for a third time.

He was joined by James Rodriguez, Toni Kroos and Sergio Ramos, who also had silverware to show off after Monday night’s glittering ceremony in Zurich, Switzerland.

Colombian star Rodriguez won the Puskas Award for best goal following his sensational strike against Uruguay at the World Cup last summer.

Also Read:  Cristiano Ronaldo wins FIFA Player of the Year for the 3rd time

Ramos and Kroos, meanwhile, were named in the FIFA FIFPro World XI for 2014 along with Angel di Maria, who moved from Real to Manchester United over the summer.

Despite leading Real to their elusive 10th European Cup success, Ancelotti missed out on the coach of the year award which went to German World Cup-winner Joachim Low

Ronaldo, 29, was the hot favourite to claim the main prize after an outstanding 2014 that saw him score 61 goals for club and country, provid 22 assists and claim nine club and individual honours.

He played an integral part as Real won the Champions League, rounding off a 4-1 win over city rivals Atletico Madrid in May’s Lisbon final.

Real also won the Copa del Rey, UEFA Super Cup and the FIFA Club World Cup. Averaging a goal every 62 minutes in La Liga during the calendar year of 2014, Ronaldo also claimed the top scorer trophy.