World Player of the Year Cristiano Ronaldo has said he would not have sanctioned the sales of Angel di Maria and Xabi Alonso if he was in charge of Real Madrid.
The European champions sorely missed both departed midfielders and the injured Ronaldo as they succumbed to a shock 4-2 defeat at Real Sociedad on Sunday.
“If I was in charge, I would not do it like this, but everyone has their opinion and is free to say what they think,” Ronaldo said at a sponsor’s event on Monday.
“If the president thinks it is best for the team to sign some players and let others go then we have to respect and support his decision,” he added.
Mexico international Javier Hernandez became Madrid’s fourth summer signing on Monday after agreeing to a season-long loan deal from Manchester United.
However, despite the arrivals of World Cup stars James Rodriguez, Toni Kroos and Keylor Navas, there was severe criticism of the club in the Spanish press for letting two of their most consistent performers in their run to the record 10th European Cup leave.
Di Maria was man-of-the-match in the Champions League final victory over Atletico Madrid, but was tranferred for a British transfer record ￡59.7 million (US$98 million) last week.
Alonso, meanwhile, asked to leave the club, citing a need for a new challenge at 32 years of age.
However, Ronaldo also insisted that the new players should be given time to settle in, having not had much of a pre-season due to the World Cup.
“We have only been going two weeks, we don’t have to sound the alarm bells yet,” he said. “We need to be calm and work hard. There are three or four new players and the World Cup will affect their physical level. The players arrived late and didn’t have a great pre-season. Hopefully, it is just taking a little longer to adjust, but I believe we will have a good season.”
Real face a big test on their return to action in 12 days time though as they face Atletico for already the third time this season, after losing 2-1 on aggregate to los Rojiblancos in the Spanish Super Cup.
And Ronaldo is confident he will be fit to face the La Liga champions.
“My objective is always to play in the next game. I am sure I will be there,” he said.