Madrid ready for Clasico run
Cristiano Ronaldo and Iker Casillas have called for focus ahead of a crunch four-game run against Barcelona.
By James Riach
Last Updated: 14/04/11 7:58pm
Real Madrid stars Cristiano Ronaldo and Iker Casillas have called for focus ahead of a crunch four-game run against Barcelona.
Los Merengues face their Catalan rivals in La Liga on Saturday before a meeting in the Copa del Rey and a mouth-watering double header in the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League.
Madrid booked their place in the last four of Europe's elite club competition on Wednesday night following a 5-0 aggregate triumph over Tottenham, setting up a tantalising tie.
Ronaldo, who scored at White Hart Lane in midweek, is under no illusions about the task in hand, and warns his team-mates they will have to be at their best to reach the Wembley final.
"We are happy for qualifying for the next round," Ronaldo told the club's official website.
"Tottenham Hotspur are a great team, but we did a great job in both games.
"We've taken an important step because we're now closer to the final.
"We will face the strongest opponent of all in the semi-finals, and we must be ready. Barcelona are one of the best teams in the world, but so are we.
"We have to believe it is possible for us to beat them. We are having a good run and feel confident.
"The team that makes the least mistakes will reach the final. I hope it's Real Madrid."
Meanwhile, captain and goalkeeper Casillas is in a similarly bullish mood ahead of the Primera Division Clasico at the weekend.
Madrid may be eight points off Barca but Casillas insists Jose Mourinho's charges will be giving it their all at the Bernabeu.
"We must now focus on our league clash against them because it is the nearest of them all," he said.
"It will be completely different to our fixtures in the semi-finals.
"I am Real Madrid's captain, and I would be disrespecting Madridistas if I said Saturday's Clasico didn't matter.
"We want to defeat Barcelona on Saturday to earn more points because the league title is still attainable. It isn't all lost."