Portugal star Cristiano Ronaldo has recovered from the injury that is threatening to wreck his World Cup campaign by returning to training to give Real Madrid a huge boost ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League clash with Bayern Munich.
The Portuguese superstar, who is expected to star in their final Group G match against Ghana at the World Cup in June, has missed his team’s last two matches – including last week’s Copa del Rey final victory over Barcelona – with a thigh injury and his participation against Pep Guardiola’s team was in doubt.
But he came through an intense training session without discomfort yesterday morning and, unless he suffers another setback, now appears to be on course to return to action to spearhead his team’s bid for European glory.
Ronaldo, this season’s leading Champions League scorer with 14 goals in eight games, will be relieved to be back in action for one of the biggest games of his Madrid career as Los Blancos seek to go one better than the semi-final exit they have suffered in each of the last three seasons.
Admitting he is always frustrated to miss out on any action, Ronaldo said: “I always want to play because football is my work and the passion of my life.”
Ronaldo also put down his famous work ethic to the enjoyment he derives from playing the game, adding: “The fact that I enjoy playing every game makes it not that difficult to be on top form.
“I always try to improve, to reach my goals and no be defeated. It’s not easy to consistently play at a high level, but with strength and passion I give the best of myself every day.”
Ronaldo also had words of high praise for one of the unsung members of his team’s squad, Luka Modric, who is enjoying an excellent second season at the Bernabeu.
While the majority of headlines are dominated by Ronaldo and fellow forward Gareth Bale, classy Croatian midfielder Modric has become an indispensable member of the midfield after struggling to make a big contribution during his first campaign in Spain.