MICHIGAN — Spanish football giants Real Madrid forward Cristiano Ronaldo is recovering well from his knee injury and may return to action in Saturday’s friendly against his former club Manchester United in Michigan, according to coach Carlo Ancelotti.
The Portugal captain and World Player of the Year has been hampered by a left knee problem in recent months and was clearly below his best at the World Cup in Brazil, where the Portuguese failed to progress beyond the group stage.
“He (Ronaldo) did two sessions today and he is working well on his own,” Ancelotti said at a news conference on Tuesday after Real were beaten 1-0 by AS Roma in a friendly at the International Champions Cup in Dallas.
“Let’s see if in the next few days he can train with the team and can play against Manchester,” added the Italian. “We have to be careful, right now we have to be calm.”
Ancelotti will be hoping Ronaldo regains full fitness in time for the European champions’ first competitive fixture of the 2014-15 season, the European Super Cup against La Liga rivals and Europa League winners Sevilla in Cardiff on August 12.
Real have strengthened their squad with the purchase of Colombia playmaker James Rodriguez and Germany midfielder Toni Kroos and Ancelotti said there might be more movement before the transfer window closes at the end of August.
Media reports in Spain have said Real are looking to sign Costa Rica goalkeeper Keylor Navas from Levante.
“We have to think about the players who are at Real Madrid at the moment,” Ancelotti said when asked about the transfer market.
“The market ends on August 31 and a lot of things could happen but we have to focus on those (players) that we have.”
Meanwhile, Roma beat Real Madrid 1-0 on Tuesday in a friendly match disrupted by a pitch invasion, with a Palestinian flag being waved among the intruders.
Approximately 20 fans, mostly young men, appeared to overwhelm the security officials.
Players and team officials waited as the intruders were rounded up and removed from the scene. Some players stretched while others just stood with hands on hips as the fans ran past looking for acknowledgement.
Roma veteran Francesco Totti scored the only goal on a cross from the right by Alessandro Florenzi in the 58th minute.
Roma nearly made it 2-0 about a minute later, but Adem Ljajic had a close miss. Real Madrid’s Isco shot just right of the goal in the 60th minute.
Roma’s next game in the International Champions Cup friendly tournament is against Italian rival Internazionale on Saturday, when Real Madrid will play Manchester United. — Reuters