Real Madrid boss Zidane: "Maybe we are lacking a number nine..."


Ronaldo still has another of the five-game ban he was given for pushing the referee to serve at the weekend, but his return in Europe should give Madrid both firepower and a confidence boost.

Ronaldo is eligible to feature in Wednesday's Champions League group-stage opener at home to Cypriot side APOEL, as Madrid looks to get back to winning ways and begin the defence of its European crown in strong fashion.

Zidane admitted that his side face a slight problem in the absence of Karim Benzema for a period of four to six weeks, leaving the Real boss with only one recognised striker in Borja Mayoral after the club sanctioned the departures in the summer of Álvaro Morata and Mariano.

Zidane was quick to insist there is more to his team than the Ballon d'Or victor, although he is relieved to have Ronaldo back for this game.

"I prefer Cristiano to be with us always".

'When Horacio called me and told me Real Madrid were interested, I said I just wanted to play there'. He transmits that [to his team-mates].

"We're happy to have Cristiano back".

"He's very focused on what he has to do".

"He was an important player for them and they couldn't hold onto him". Mentally he's fine, physically he's fine.

"I believe I have been playing very well and this has been replicated by the fans and the club who have shown me a lot of love. I hope Sunday is the last game of the season that he is not here". "It turned out that we couldn't add another player and that's it".