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Zidane ‘not worried’ by Ronaldo strike rate

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MADRID: Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane has dismissed concerns surrounding Cristiano Ronaldo’s supposed troubles in front of goal that have led to boos from the club’s notoriously demanding fans.

The Portugal superstar has scored four times in nine appearances for the Spanish league leaders since returning from the knee injury that forced him off in his country’s Euro 2016 final win over France.

He failed to find the net in Madrid’s last two games and there were boos from sections of the Santiago Bernabeu crowd after the three-time world player of the year missed a chance in Sunday’s 2-1 victory over Athletic Bilbao.

“Personally, it’s not that I am indifferent to it, I would prefer him to score two or three goals in every match, but I am not worried because I know it will pass,” Zidane said ahead of Wednesday’s trip to third-tier Cultural Leonesa in the last 32, first leg of the Copa del Rey.

“He is still getting lots of chances and soon he will put them away. I was also booed when I was a player, it can happen and it means the crowd expect a lot of the player.

“The Bernabeu is special. But he knows it, he is used to it and he is not worried.”

Ronaldo is rested for Wednesday’s game along with Gareth Bale, Karim Benzema, Marcelo and goalkeeper Keylor Navas. They should all return for Saturday’s trip to Alaves.

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