Real Madrid was still holding on tight to the belief they could made a run at the La Liga title. Despite Barcelona sitting with a large lead in the standings, Real Madrid was confident that a few key wins would put them back in the mix. However, those dream ended when the team fell to Athletico Madrid which brought on harsh criticism from Cristiano Ronaldo.
Understandably frustrated, Ronaldo had some tough words for his teammates after the team's La Liga title hopes ended on Saturday.
"It bothers me when it's said that Madrid is struggling because Cristiano is struggling. It feels like you are after me," Ronaldo said, via the Telegraph. "If everyone was at my level, perhaps we would be in first place."
Those words were not met well from fans. Manager Sergio Ramos was forced to defended his star while voicing his support for the rest of the team. Meanwhile, Ronaldo had to backtrack on his comments in order to downplay the drama that had been created.
"I'm not better than anyone," Ronaldo said, via BBC.com. "I was talking about the physical level, about the injuries.""I don't want to disrespect anyone, but when the best players aren't available it's harder to win. I like to play with Karim, with Bale, with Marcelo. I'm not saying the others like Lucas Vazquez, Jese and Mateo Kovacic are not good players - they are very good players - but it's not the same."
Ronaldo and Benzema reportedly felt disrespected by the fans, according to Sport English. The fans were not happy with the loss as it was Real's third consecutive derby loss at home while putting the La Liga title in jeopardy. Fans could be heard chanting for team president Florentino Perez to resign. Ronaldo was right to downplay his criticism regarding Real Madrid, but no one would fault him for being frustrated. The striker has nine goals in the last seven matches for Real Madrid. He was simply not enough to get the win with so many other players out.
Ronaldo's frustrations will not help the swarm of rumors that he could transfer sooner rather than later to the Premier League. The pressure is there for Ronaldo to depart his long-time team. Manchester United is putting on the hard sell for Ronaldo to transfer according to the Manchester Evening News. The striker has stated he is committed to Real Madrid, but if the losing continues, he could begin to get serious about the Premier League.