Manchester United's Cristiano Ronaldo confident of dealing with Real pressure
24 June 2009 09:05
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The Portuguese international underwent and passed a medical over the weekend and is now set to shatter the world transfer record once his switch from Old Trafford to the Bernabeu is finalised.
Reports in Spain suggest Ronaldo is expected to attract around 500 reporters from over 25 countries at his Real unveiling - Zinedine Zidane got 400 - while according to AS, Madrid are expecting around 25,000 fans to show up in the stands to witness Ronaldo pull on the white shirt for the very first time.
Following news that United had accepted Real's record offer, many have speculated how the 24-year-old current Fifa World Player of the Year will handle the pressure of playing alongside the likes of Kaka, Raul and Iker Casillas under what will be intense media scrutiny.
Ronaldo, though, is confident that his transition from the Premier League to La Liga will be a smooth one and he is looking forward to the challenge ahead.
Ronaldo said: "My career has always consisted of different challenges. At Manchester United it was like that every year.
"This season is different because it is a completely different experience for me and the challenges ahead are different ones.
"The expectations will be very high but I am used to that. I know who I am and I know what I have to do.
"Right now I am relaxing with my family to make sure I am fully rested mentally and physically for my arrival to Real Madrid.
"Football in England is different, it is more physical. No matter how good you are it takes time to adapt to any type of football. I just hope I can get used to it as quickly as possible."
When Ronaldo's proposed move to Real was officially announced it came as little surprise to United fans, despite Sir Alex Ferguson's insistence that the player was not for sale.
Ferguson has been told he will be allowed to spend the full £80m on strengthening his squad and Ronaldo also expressed the hope that supporters will respect his decision to join Real.
"Real Madrid is a club I have always wanted to play for. I am very grateful for the effort they have made on my behalf," he said.
"I hope the fans of Manchester will understand my decision. It was a mutual decision that quickly came to an agreement and I am very happy about that."