Cristiano Ronaldo and Real Madrid greeted by hundreds of fans in Japan as they arrive for Club World Cup

A 5.15am start didn’t deter Real Madrid fans in Japan as they turned out in force to welcome the Spanish giants on Monday morning.

Cristiano Ronaldo and Co looked fresh despite the flight of more than 13 hours from Madrid to Tokyo’s Haneda following their 3-2 win over Deportivo la Caruna.

Hundreds of fans showed how popular Los Blancos is in the country where they are looking to win their first Club World Cup since 2012.

Zinedine Zidane’s side is making Yokohama’s Royal Park Hotel their home while they prepare for their semi-final against Club America on Thursday.

The Mexican’s beat Jeonbuk Hyundai 2-1 on Sunday to set up the clash.

While the tournament between the top team in each of FIFA’s six confederations is derided in some circles, Real is taking it seriously insisted Toni Kroos last week.

“We go with the aim of being crowned the best team in the world,” he said.

Ronaldo’s arrival in a squad missing only Gareth Bale, who is recovering from ankle surgery, means he will miss Monday night’s Ballon d’Or ceremony in Paris.

Ronaldo is set to appear at the ceremony either through a pre-recorded video or live video link, which seems unlikely given it would be around 5am in Japan.

It is believed Ronaldo has already had a photo session with the trophy on Thursday in Madrid.

Ronaldo has claimed the Euro 2016 and Champions League crowns during the period of judging which will return to being decided by journalists after the Ballon d’Or split from FIFA this year.

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