Calderon focuses on Sneijder amid Ron rumours

August 4, 2008

President Ramon Calderon refused to disclose whether Real Madrid would step up their pursuit of Cristiano Ronaldo after Wesley Sneijder suffered an horrific knee injury against Arsenal yesterday.

Holland midfielder Sneijder was carried off during his side's 1-0 loss at the Emirates Stadium following a heavy tackle from Abou Diaby and reports suggest he could be out for up to six months.

Sneijder's team-mate Michel Salgado admitted he thought the playmaker's injury could force the Spanish club to put even more energy into their seemingly relentless courtship of Manchester United star Ronaldo.

But Calderon preferred to focus on Sneijder, expressing sympathy for the 24-year-old.

'We are very upset about Sneijder's injury,' he said. 'It's serious and it's the worst news we could have.

'He has, at the very least, torn his interior ligament.

'He is very bad, very upset. He is crying because it is a very serious problem and very painful.

'He is a very important footballer for us but that's sport. We feel bad for him. He had bad luck.'

Midfielder Javier Garcia believes Madrid can take much from the Emirates Cup, despite a less than impressive performance.

The Primera Liga champions were lucky to beat Hamburg 2-1 on Saturday before yesterday's loss to the Gunners.

However, Garcia believes his team will be fit and ready to go by the time the Spanish season kicks off on August 31.

'I think our preparation is going well, very well,' he said. 'Apart from the fact that at times we found it hard getting into game and of course the injury to Wes, I think it went well.'

Hamburg were the overall winners of the tournament, which also included Juventus.

Like Madrid, Juve also failed to impress as they scraped a 1-0 victory over Arsenal on Saturday before losing 3-0 to Hamburg.