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Monday, August 01, 2005

Christiano Ronaldo is a striker

Ever since I saw Manchester United midfielder Christiano Ronaldo I thought he looked better and more dangerous facing a defender in front of goal than anywhere else on the field.

To Manchester United fans there may be a touch of the obvious in that statement, but that’s the point. Ronaldo constantly beats people 1 on 1 in midfield; he’s got the fastest feet I have ever seen and often seems to be wasting that talent taking on quick wingers instead of central defenders. Ever watch Christiano Ronaldo up against a central defender? He’s a nightmare for the traditionally bigger, slower players.

Ronaldo has a striker mentality. He’s an attacker, thru and thru. He’ll never defend any better than David Beckham and he’s a much quicker player. His eye is on the goal, creating something or feeding someone thru. Manchester United should let him have that. You may argue he already does, but there is a difference knowing you have to track back and knowing you are there to get the goals.

You may also argue that Manchester United need Ronaldo’s crossing, well, if you look at the modern game the striker is regularly feeding in crosses. Because of a shift in role you’d see fewer Ronaldo crosses, yes, but replacing the quality depends on who you fill that need with, doesn’t it.

When you move Ronaldo forward it allows you to place another player in midfield. Give Ronaldo free reign and a main focus on supporting Wayne Rooney up front with him and you’d get better defensive cover than you do now.

Think of any wingers (like Figo at Real Madrid) in need of work? Imagine what Cafu could add.

12 Comments:

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

You say that Man Utd need his crossing, they need some crossing, but there not getting it from him because he can't cross a ball to save his life. I would rather see Park on the right, because he can cross, but who would Ronaldo replace up front, Ruud? Rooney? Smith? thats why he wouldn't get in my starting eleven.

8/01/2005 5:24 PM  
Blogger Football Commentator said...

Ronaldo + Rooney

8/01/2005 5:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I dont know dude, you got me thinking but fergo would never buy it and what about CR himself

8/01/2005 5:26 PM  
Anonymous SJ said...

Gary Neville and alex ferguson both agreed when he signed that they see him as a foward in the future as he has a great shot and can use both feet.They did say this so its not a new point really.
The reason why he's being lpayed on the wing in my opinion is that man utd needed wingers especially since becks left and ronaldo still hadnt gained the strength and developed his brain to play that striking role.

Now he has that strength, if you look at him now hes built like ruud van nistelrooy, the guys been eating his meat, he's now gonna be unstoppable with his new found strength. only later in his career will he become a striker as man uts are full of them and short on real quality wingers.

So what i say is dont be surprised if ronaldo ends up as a sriker fergie has it in mind, he has stated it before, but my fear is will it be at man utd or madrid, my bet is madrid.

8/01/2005 5:41 PM  
Blogger Football Commentator said...

Thierry Henry was also played out of position before Arsenal.

And if Alex Ferguson thinks hes a striker then why doesnt Ronaldo play up there for the national side? You could bring in Boa Morte on the wing.

Anyone but Pauleta.

8/01/2005 6:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

He'd leave too big a hole

8/01/2005 6:54 PM  
Anonymous SJ said...

Because fegie is not manager of portugal is he, the manager there has a different opinion. If he feels that system works then thats up to him.

Ronaldo played as a striker in all his youth teams and for sporting lisbon.

8/01/2005 6:58 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

c

8/01/2005 7:10 PM  
Blogger Football Commentator said...

SJ-

Yes, at Sporting Lisbon he was played as a striker (also int'l youth) but also as a winger. He played on the wing much of the game vs Man U that brought him there.

Scolari has Boa Morte and a #9 that doesnt score goals.

If Ronaldo is a a striker in all these coaches eyes, then why is he always played on the wing?

8/01/2005 7:12 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I disagree - watchin Ronaldo, he just doesnt have a true strikers instinct. His goal return was fair last season, but he just doesnt look as focused on the goal as Rooney, say.

His dribbling and running also to me seem better suited to the wing. He has lots of space to run into, to put the ball past ppl and skin em. Playin up front for Man Utd, where you face different tactics to some other clubs, he wouldnt got the opportunity to face defenders one on one. When you play for Man U, teams defend deep with MF in front of defenders.

Besides too much of his all round game is lacking for him to be an English striker - hes not the strongest, cant play with his back to goal, cant shield the ball like a CF needs to, his heading is perfunctory no more, hes not the best vollyer. Its the same reason Giggs was never an out and out striker.

Dont get me wrong, in the right conditions CR makes a great striker. He played like that at Highbury last season, and was fantastic. But more often than not it suits both him and Man U more to have him on the wing.

8/01/2005 7:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Giggs is more willing to defend!

8/01/2005 7:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In a 4-3-3, he is playing as a striker, just not a no. 9, which he obviously isn't. He's much better suited to playing as a 433 winger, running at defenders than as either a striker or "traditional" winger in 442. He just needs to make better decisions as to when to shoot and when to pass.

8/02/2005 12:34 AM  

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