Catalan newspaper Sport - citing a report from COPE - claim Ronaldo made it clear he wanted to start on the left, his favoured position, after being instructed to lead the line for Los Blancos in their season-opener.
Ronaldo’s wish was granted on this occasion, with Benitez deploying the three-time Ballon d’Or winner on the left, Gareth Bale in the No. 10 role, Isco on the right and Jese upfront.
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Benitez, though, may have wished he’d stuck to his guns and demanded Ronaldo do the job for the good of the team. Real Madrid drew the match 0-0.
Ronaldo, according to Sport, is not impressed with Benitez putting so much tactical attention on Bale. The 30-year-old fears the plan is for the Welshman to take his place on the left wing, the position Ronaldo believes he performs best in.
Benitez regards Ronaldo as a tactical 'disaster'
But Benitez has real concerns about Ronaldo’s lackadaisical attitude towards defending. In fact, the report claims the former Manchester United star is a “disaster” for the ex-Liverpool boss in terms of tactics.
Benitez believes the solution would be to play Ronaldo as the team’s centre-forward - freeing him of the defensive duties he struggles to carry out.
Considering 64 per cent of his 61 goals scored last season came in the position of a striker, it makes sense for Ronaldo to at least consider the idea of moving upfront.
But the man who has netted a staggering 313 goals in 301 appearances for Real Madrid wields an awful lot of power at the Bernabeu - as Benitez is now discovering.
Should Cristiano Ronaldo do as Rafael Benitez asks and move upfront? Have your say by leaving a comment in the box below!