Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Mobile Ron too hot to handle

Ronaldo has admitted he was back to his best after dismantling Arsenal's Champions League hopes on Tuesday night. And who can argue with the United forward after he blasted two goals to help Fergie's men to a comfortable 3-1 success and 4-1 aggregate win over the Gunners.

Asked if he is now at his peak, he told ITV1: "I think so, yes.

"In the last few games I have felt good, felt fit. This is a crucial time in the season and the best games are coming."

Ronaldo, who netted 42 times last season, has had his critics this term with pundits and fans alike suggesting his mind was not focused with reports of a move to Real Madrid hitting the news headlines.

But since the turn of the year he has scored 14 times and he was in scintillating form as he hammered home an astonishing 40-yard free-kick before finishing a sweeping counter-attack with a confident finish with Ji-Sung Park also on the scoresheet.

But it was Ronaldo's movement and mobility that had Arsenal's rearguard in a flap. Sir Alex opted to use Wayne Rooney down the left with Park operating in a similar role down the right and Ronaldo as the central striker. However, Ronaldo was deployed in far from a conventional manner and his willingness to come deep and collect the ball and roam wide into the channels meant that Arsenal's centre-back pairing of Johan Djourou and Kolo Toure were often left with nobody to mark.

The pair of them were unwilling to follow Ronaldo around the park and then when he did get in and around the penalty area his movement often allowed him time and space on the ball. In truth both Rooney and Park once again put in heroic performances and their ability to interchange positions along with their undoubted workrate meant that Arsenal never got to grips with the champions.

United were simply a class apart, not just at The Emirates but in the first leg at Old Trafford as well and it's a safe football bet that they thoroughly deserve their place in the Rome showpiece.

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