Cristiano Ronaldo has told his critics to “put the guitar back in its case” following Real Madrid’s historic Champions League final triumph over Juventus on Saturday.
Zinedine Zidane’s side became the first team to win the competition in consecutive seasons in its modern format thanks to a 4-1 victory over the Serie A champions in Cardiff.
Ronaldo scored twice to finish the season as the top scorer in the competition with 12, meaning he has now finished as the outright or joint-leading goalscorer in the tournament for a record five seasons in a row.
His second goal, which put Madrid 3-1 ahead in the second half, was also his 600th in his senior career for club and country.
The 32-year-old believes Madrid were worthy winners and was happy to take another swipe at his detractors at the end of a season in which he has suffered boos at the hands of Madrid fans at Santiago Bernabeu and had his form questioned at times.
“I answered on the pitch,” he told Atresmedia and beIN SPORTS. “The people who criticised me have to put the guitar back in its case, again.
“It’s incredible. It’s another amazing season. To finish the year with the Champions League and the record… I’m very happy.
“We’re the first team to win consecutive Champions Leagues and I scored two goals. It’s one more record, these players deserved it and I did as well because I scored two goals and I’m the top scorer in the Champions League.”
600 – Cristiano Ronaldo ha marcado el gol nº 600 en su carrera como jugador de club y selección (529 y 71). Increíble. pic.twitter.com/5Q2p8W8P07
— OptaJose (@OptaJose) June 3, 2017
Ronaldo again highlighted a change to his approach in training and a greater willingness to be rested as a key factor in his strong end to the season.
“It was a spectacular final,” he said. “I prepared for this. It was a good choice of mine and my coach and I’m very happy for how I’ve finished.”
Mario Mandzukic cancelled out Madrid’s opener with a spectacular overhead kick but the Liga champions were totally dominant in the second half and sealed the win through Casemiro, Ronaldo and Marco Asensio.
Ronaldo praised Zidane for delivering the right words at half-time to inspire them to their result.
“Zidane’s chat was very positive. He believes in us a lot and in the second half we showed that we are very good,” he said.
“I want to thank the fans for their support from the very start of the Champions League. The objective now is to win it again next year. Anything is possible.”