Thursday, August 24, 2017

Arbeloa: Ronaldo not the only threat

Alvaro Arbeloa is adamant that Euro 2012 semi-final opponents Portugal have more in their armoury than Cristiano Ronaldo.

The Spanish defender’s Real Madrid team-mate started off the tournament in frustrating fashion after struggling against Germany and Denmark in the opening two group games.

But three impressive displays since, including three goals, and the forward has become one of the form players in the competition heading into the last four.

Despite the former Manchester United star’s purple patch, Arbeloa believes Spain will have to make sure they do not solely concentrate on Ronaldo, pointing out that they have several other dangerous players.

Speaking to reporters, Arbeloa said: “We all know that Ronaldo is an excellent player, but Portugal are not only Cristiano. They have had an excellent tournament with players of great quality and we have stop all of them, not only Cristiano.

“We know how good he is, and he is showing that at the Euros. We hope that we have a good game and Cristiano not so much.

“It’s always physically and mentally demanding to face a player who is one of the best and playing at a spectacular level.

“I always like to measure myself against the best, it’s a great challenge.”

When the two sides meet on Wednesday Ronaldo will not be the only Real Madrid team-mate Arbeloa will face, with Fabio Coentrao and Pepe also expected to feature for Paulo Bento’s side.

But the Spanish right-back insists club friendships go out of the door when playing for the national team.

“It’s the same as when you are at your clubs and you play against team-mates from the national side,” Arbeloa said.

“Tomorrow I will have not club-mates, they will be enemies.

“I don’t usually speak with the people against who I’m going to play. I will fight to help Spain get into the final.”

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