Twin Dreams of European Domination Will Drive Cristiano Ronaldo Through 2012-13 Season

Twin Dreams of European Domination Will Drive Cristiano Ronaldo Through 2012-13 SeasonCristiano Ronaldo didn't reach the pinnacle of world soccer by resting on his laurels. He sets goals, meets them, sets new ones and meets those too.

Fresh of a stunning season with Real Madrid, Ronaldo revealed his targets for the next year. He told Sky Sports that he hopes to win the 2012 European Championships with Portugal and the 2012-13 UEFA Champions League with Real Madrid.

"Next season my objective will be to win the Champions League but now I am focused on the Euros," he said. "Spain, Germany and Holland are the favourites but Portugal are able to produce a surprise.

"I dream of winning any title with Portugal and this year is possible. Our group is hard and complicated but Holland and Germany are not invincible. I respect their squads but do not fear them. Our advantage is we will suffer less pressure in these matches. They are the big favourites."

National team captain Ronaldo will lead his country in this summer's tournament. Portugal was drawn into the so-called "group of death" alongside Germany, the Netherlands and Denmark, and many are predicting that it will make an early exit. But Ronaldo is capable of producing goals at the highest level, and his presence makes it possible for Portugal to compete against any team in the world.

When Euro 2012 concludes on July 1, Ronaldo will take a short break before he returns to Real Madrid for preseason training. The Spanish club will be hard-pressed to improve on its record-breaking 2011-12 campaign, which saw an end to Barcelona's reign at the top of La Liga. But its semifinal exit from the Champions League left Ronaldo with an empty feeling.

It's not certain that Real Madrid will win next season's Champions League. Ronaldo may not match the 62 goals he scored this season. But he will continue to show the drive that has taken him to this point in his storied career.

Have a question for Marcus Kwesi O'Mard? Send it to him via Twitter at @NESNsoccer, NESN Soccer's Facebook page or send it here. He will pick a few questions to answer every week for his mailbag.

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