Spain out to deactivate Ronaldo

Spain coach Vicente del Bosque has stated that his team must ‘deactivate’ Cristiano Ronaldo in the Euro 2012 semi-finals on Wednesday night.

The Real Madrid superstar has re-found his form in the last two games for the Iberian nation, scoring three goals in Paulo Bento’s side’s progression to the last four.

With the world champions knowing the quality of Ronaldo due to him playing his club football in La Liga, Del Bosque is wary of the threat the attacker presents.

“It’s logical that there is so much talk about Ronaldo.” Del Bosque told reporters, published in The Telegraph.

“He is not only a great player, but he plays in Spain, so that’s obviously a factor. We have to deactivate him.

“But this is going to be one of the most important matches of our lives. It can take us to the final.”

Meanwhile, Alvaro Arbeloa will be charged with marking his Madrid team-mate on Wednesday and has revealed that he is looking forward to the challenge of playing one of the world’s best players.

“I will probably speak with him when I see him. If I’m lucky, the coach will put me alongside him. He is very demanding to play against, but I am confident I can do well,” he confessed.

“You have to be prepared mentally and physically when you play against someone like Ronaldo. He’s one of the best players there is.

”But I like to measure myself against the best in the world and it’s a great challenge for me.”

The winner of the clash will face either Germany or Italy in the tournament final.

By Gareth McKnight