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Sensational Robinho apologizes for tardiness, not partying
October 26th, 2007 7AM



[VIDEO] Robinho's sensational performance for Real Madrid in its 4-2 win over Olympiakos in the Champions League on Wednesday went a long way toward winning back the support of Madrid fans after his no-show last weekend.

Robinho scored two goals against Olympiakos and a made spectacular move to earn a penalty kick that teammate Ruud van Nistelrooy failed to convert. The performance was one of Robinho's best with the Merengues.

Robinho came in for heavy criticism after reports of heavy partying -- some described it as an orgy -- after Brazil's 5-0 win over Ecuador in World Cup qualifying last Wednesday in Rio de Janeiro and his failure to make it back to Madrid to prepare for last Saturday's game that Real lost to Espanyol, 2-1.

Madrid coach Bernd Schuster dropped Robinho for the game at Espanyol after the Brazilian arrived back in Madrid on Friday.

"I don't have to apologize for going out [after the Brazil match]," Robinho said. "I was with the Brazilian team and when we lose we go straight back home, but if we win we choose to go out. What I do have to apologize for is returning late because I have an obligation to the club."

Robinho said he had trouble with his flight and also mistakenly believed that the Espanyol game was on Sunday, not Saturday.

"I dedicate my goals to the boss [Schuster] because he backed me all the way," said Robinho after the Olympiakos game.

Reports of Robinho's wild partying were particularly sensitive because Real Madrid had just instituted a code of conduct last month demanding that players "pay attention to their public image."

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