Cristiano Ronaldo instills winning mentality among teammates: Zinedine Zidane

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Cristiano Ronaldo instills winning mentality among teammates: Zinedine Zidane

Ronaldo had been handed a domestic five-match ban after pushing a referee during the Spanish Super Cup first leg.

The Chelsea flop has attacked the 32-year-old striker, who won the treble with Real Madrid last season, claiming he was only good for two months.

Madrid went on to win its first league game of the season in his absence, but that was followed by successive home draws with Valencia and Levante.

Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane has underlined the importance of welcoming back World Player of the Year Cristiano Ronaldo for the holders Champions League opener against APOEL Nicosia today.

The Brazilian had praise for the 30-year-old in a recent interview, but also insisted he has never been tempted to ask for Messi's jersey at the end of a match because representing his team means more than playing against the five-time Ballon d'Or victor. "He is an important player in the squad, a leader who always wants to win and instills that among his teammates", the former Real Madrid player added.

"I prefer Cristiano to be with us always". He transmits that [to his team-mates].

Zidane said that Ronaldo was focused on the task ahead and was very happy to have the opportunity to play again.

"And we are happy too, because he is mentally very well, physically very fine".

"He's going to play tomorrow, but we're not going to have him on Sunday".

The Portuguese worldwide has won the prestigious award four times already and looks set to make it five after winning La Liga, the Champions League and Spanish Supercup last season.

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