Karanka in confident mood

Aitor Karanka believes Real Madrid head into their Champions League clash with Manchester United in good form.

Last Updated: 10/02/13 at 11:22 Post Comment

Aitor Karanka: Confident Real Madrid are in good form

Aitor Karanka: Confident Real Madrid are in good form

Real Madrid assistant coach Aitor Karanka believes his team head into their Champions League clash with Manchester United in good form - and hopes the extra day's rest will be evident at the Bernabeu on Wednesday.

The Primera Division champions trounced Sevilla 4-1 last night, Cristiano Ronaldo firing an ominous warning to his former club with a hat-trick, while Sir Alex Ferguson's side play Everton at 1600 today before turning their attention to the trip to the Spanish capital.

Madrid coach Jose Mourinho has, on several occasions, complained that the match scheduling has worked against his team - only last weekend he pointed out the fact his side had to play at Granada on Saturday while Barcelona faced Valencia on Sunday after the arch rivals' midweek Copa del Rey Clasico exertions.

But, ahead of the Champions League last 16 first leg, Karanka said: "Real Madrid are coming into the match in good form, and not because of (last night's) result.

"Apart from the match against Granada, the team has been showing good things throughout January. (Against Sevilla) we played well and have given a bit of a rest to key players and the match comes at a good time for us."

On the extra day's rest, Karanka said: "We've proven it ourselves - it does show.

"They have a bit of a cushion (at the top of the Barclays Premier League) and I'm sure they'll be making rotations and resting important players."

Matches against Sevilla have proved rich pickings for Ronaldo and it was no different last night as he followed up Karim Benzema's 18th-minute opener with goals in the 26th, 46th and 59th minutes as Madrid sauntered to victory .

That took his tally of hat-tricks for the Spanish giants to an incredible 20 before he was replaced in the 63rd minute as Mourinho opted to wrap his trump card in cotton wool ahead of Wednesday's showdown with United.

Soon after Ronaldo's departure Madrid were reduced to 10 men when striker Gonzalo Higuain was sent off, but Sevilla also finished a man down after losing Hedwiges Maduro to a red card with nine minutes left.

Sevilla did net a late consolation through Manu del Moral but it mattered little as Mourinho's men, who surprisingly lost 1-0 at Granada last weekend, trimmed the gap to leaders Barca back to 13 points.

Ronaldo had netted at the wrong end in the shock defeat at Granada, and Karanka felt it was important to get back on track quickly.

"After the match against Granada and to dispel any doubts and, playing at home in our stadium, I think there was no better way to approach the match than how we started," he said on www.realmadrid.com.

"It looks like it was easy if you look at the result. Sevilla have quality players and, although we were 2-0 up at the break, they could have created some danger, but the third goal at the start of the second half settled things."

On the Granada blip, he acknowledged: "These things can happen when you're not as switched on as last year, but this team will be winning matches until the end."

Karanka was delighted with the form of Ronaldo heading into the midweek blockbuster with the Portugal forward's former employers.

"He has had that admiration (from the fans) for a long time and he knows how important he is for the team," the Madrid number two said.

"It is important that a player like Cristiano is at this level."


Click here for completely free £10 bet with Sky Bet & £5 free every week


Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

N

ice work John.. have to agree with everything. Never measure your wealth in money.

wexford_blue
We're Not All Jealous Guys...

I

s it the same people that complain about Chelsea that complain about Mayweather? You should by now know what to expect from both, if you can't appreciate how good they are at nullifying their opponents then don't watch them.

Noz2k
Chelsea: This Ending Always Justifies The Means

I

do concede though, that getting rid of Luiz has made them less entertaining. In the same way that driving with both eyes open is less exciting, but probably a good idea.

megabrow (cufc)
Chelsea: This Ending Always Justifies The Means

Footer 365

Stephen McManus says Motherwell are full of confidence

Stephen McManus says Motherwell are full of confidence despite being adrift in the Scottish Premiership playoff place.

Arsene Wenger only wants to bring 'world-class' players to Arsenal

Arsene Wenger has revealed he is only looking to add “top, world-class players” to his Arsenal squad this summer.

Hull 1-3 Arsenal: Alexis Sanchez nets twice to move Arsenal level on points with Man City

Alexis Sanchez scored twice in the first half to help Arsenal coast past Hull with a 3-1 win at the KC Stadium.

Mail Box

Blaming Van Gaal For United Slump...

Wayne Rooney in midfield, the same balls aimed at Marouane Fellaini...Louis van Gaal has to find a solution. And a Burnley fan embraces relegation...

Shouldn't We Give Players Time?

Do we really want to throw out the baby with the bathwater every single summer? We also have a Man United fan who wants massive investment. And more...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company