Real Madrid superstar Cristiano Ronaldo is scorching-hot coming into this weekend's El Clasico showdown with Barcelona and that spells trouble for the reigning Spanish champions.
Los Blancos have won four straight matches since last month's painful derby loss to Atletico Madrid. The better news for Carlo Ancelotti's squad is that their best player, Ronaldo, has powered them in each of those victories, and is sure to do so again Saturday at Camp Nou.
The Portuguese forward has accounted for six of Real's 11 goals over the course of their four-match winning streak and has scored at least one goal in nine of his last 10 appearances with the club. Only Atletico's Diego Costa has scored more goals than Ronaldo in La Liga play thus far.
Look for Ronaldo to build on his momentum this weekend, leading Los Blancos to another victory over Barcelona.
After all, the 28-year-old is no stranger to success at Camp Nou, per Real Madrid's official Twitter account:
It definitely won't be a shock if Real hands Barcelona their first loss of the season. Barca appear suspect at the moment, drawing two straight matches against Osasuna in La Liga and AC Milan in the Champions League earlier this week. Although Barca were on the road for both matchups, they were only able to muster one goal over 180-plus minutes, despite Lionel Messi's return to the lineup.
Therefore, Gerardo Martino has plenty of reason to be worried as his club gets set to go up against a surging Real unit, led by one of the world's most dangerous players.
Ronaldo and Real can also be encouraged by the fact that they have had Barca's number as of late, beating them twice in a few-day span last winter. Ronaldo scored twice at Camp Nou to lead Real to a 3-1 win in the Copa del Rey semifinals in late February. Less than a week later, Ronaldo came on as a second-half substitute at the Bernabeu, recording six shots as Real picked up a 2-1 La Liga victory.
Although he didn't score, Ronaldo threatened Barca's defense with his pace, power and accuracy on numerous occasions.
Plays like the one below against Barca last season are what make Ronaldo so special, and such a huge thorn in the champs' side.
While Messi is a dynamic talent in his own right, he's still making his way back into top form following a thigh injury suffered earlier this year. And he isn't playing with the same immense confidence and belief that Ronaldo possesses at the moment.
Given how productive both men are, that will prove to be the difference Saturday.
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