Manchester United full-back and vice-captain, Patrice Evra hopes the emotional factor of the situation gets to Cristiano Ronaldo on Wednesday night when the Red Devils march to Santiago Bernabeu to play against Real Madrid in the first leg of their Round of 16 Champions League bouts against Real Madrid.
Cristiano Ronaldo has been Manchester United’s main concern for weeks now. The former boss of Cristiano Ronaldo, Sir Alex Ferguson has been busy hatching secret plans on keeping the Portuguese goal-scoring machine at bay.
Patrice Evra claims Manchester United is no need for technical warfare against Cristiano Ronaldo – all they have to do is take advantage of the Portuguese emotional situation. The 28-year-old Portugal international recently reiterated that he had the best times of his football career at Manchester United.
“It will be emotional for Ronny because he loves Manchester United,” Patrice Evra said. “I hope the emotion gets to him. That will be perfect for us. He will be a tough opponent but we have to make sure we are friends off the pitch and enemies on it. We don’t have to wind him up before this game because, when he is angry, he is at his best. So let’s just be nice.
“We can say, ‘Welcome home Ronny. It’s so nice to have you back, we love you, you are the best player’. We can kill him with love!” Patrice Evra added with a coy smile.
Manchester United center-back, Rio Ferdinand has a similar theory. The veteran believes making Cristiano Ronaldo angry could prove to be a wrong move. The 34-year-old is aiming at redemption after letting the Brazilian Ronaldo and Raul score goals over him the last time Manchester United met Real Madrid in the Champions League, which was in 2003.
Manchester United lost the first leg 3-1 at Santiago Bernabeu where Raul scored a brace. Ronaldo scored a brilliant hat-trick at Old Trafford, yet Manchester United came out as victors with a 4-3 score-line. Nonetheless, Real Madrid were the actual winners because of 6-5 aggregate.
“They really played us off the park in the away leg if I’m honest,” Rio Ferdinand confessed. “Raul was just difficult to get up against. He played off the front and asked you the question, ‘Do you want to come in here and mark me?’ He was the most intelligent player I’ve played against.”