How Cristiano Ronaldo Is Improving Real Madrid Teammates

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How Cristiano Ronaldo Is Improving Real Madrid Teammates
Angel Fernandez/Associated Press
Alvaro Morata Salutes Cristiano Ronaldo's Fine Contribution

When Cristiano Ronaldo joined Real Madrid in 2009, he was helped to find his feet at Santiago Bernabeu by big-name players like Raul, Ruud van Nistelrooy and Rafael van der Vaart.

But now, the time has come for the Portuguese winger to extend his knowledge to Los Galacticos' future stars.

Gareth Bale, who joined Real Madrid from Tottenham Hotspur in the summer, shows signs of a player who has already developed tenfold in Spain alongside Spanish youngsters Isco and Alvaro Morata.

The trio, who are all playing their maiden season for Los Blancos, have all played differing parts in the side's challenge to regain the La Liga title.

From Bale's 10 goals and eight assists in 22 matches to the Spanish pair's combined 32 appearanceswith a tidy six strikes from former Malaga man Iscosigns of Ronaldo's influence are evident.

Case in point: When Bale joined the Madrid side, he brought in skill sets of a pacy, out-and-out winger who loved to charge at the full-back.

However, since arriving in La Liga, the former Southampton starlet has found life difficult, having to mould his own style of play on the left wing with Ronaldo on Real's right.

This change of pace would affect many footballers, but when players hold Ronaldo in such high regard, it's hard not to learn from him.

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Spanish football expert Guillem Balague also believes the chemistry between the pair has been pivotal to Bale's rise:

What is most encouraging, perhaps, is the understanding that Ronaldo seems to have established with the Welshman, and there seems to be a genuine chemistry between the two players that can only bode well for the club long term.

Of course, it isn't just Bale who has profited from being in Ronaldo's company. As noted by Goal.com, marked improvements by Isco, despite limited chances and position headaches, have seen his place in the squad confirmed by boss Carlo Ancelotti:

"The 4-3-3 system gives us more balance because the defensive job done by the three midfielders is very good and we will keep using this system," Ancelotti said at a press conference.

"It is true that this change makes it more difficult for Isco, but I think he can play in [Angel] Di María’s or [Luka] Modric’s position as well."

Ancelotti also stated to Goal.com that it is easy to manage Ronaldo, citing the professionalism of the Ballon d'Or winner:

For me, it’s managing people. Managing Ronaldo is the same for me as managing [Dani] Carvajal or [Alvaro] Morata.

“Usually [the superstars] are more professional than the others. Ronaldo is really professional.

Perhaps the most striking sign of improvement has come through Alvaro Morata, who has been linked with a move to Arsenal by Jeremy Wilson of the Daily Telegraph among others.

The 21-year-old has already netted three league goals in 11 appearances so far this season10 as a substituteafter coming through the youth ranks at the Bernabeu.

His latest goal came against Real Betis on Jan. 18, supplied by Ronaldo to make it five for Madrid in a game which saw the Spanish under-21 international come on as a 77th-minute substitute.

As highlighted here, despite Morata's finish, the Spaniard along with the majority of his teammates ran straight to Ronaldo:

Morata's clear emotion shows the connection between himself and Ronaldotwo players who spend plenty of their time on the pitch in close quarters as they continue to flourish and develop their on-field relationship.

Pretty clear, too, that Ronaldo knew exactly where Morata was and vice versa, as Ancelotti's tactics and Ronaldo's reputation help Morata to score the goals that keep Europe's elite interested.

But what can tomorrow's stars learn from Ronaldo? Well, you're watching an enigma—a player like no other, a player that can turn a game on its head with just one pass into the right area.

And he's a player with natural leadership, as you can see with his work with Portugal and highlighted with his hat-trick against Sweden to help his side qualify for the World Cup.

Ronaldo knows the pressure that is on his headhe rises to it and embraces it. He's still just 28, but in that time, he's lived and worked in three different countries and had his face and abilities both praised and scrutinised by managers, players, fans and journalists across the globe.

 

Follow me on Twitter @DanBrett90.

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