Friday, March 5, 2021
Sports

‘Magical night’: Cristiano Ronaldo lifts Juventus into Champions League quarter-finals

Ronaldo lifts
Ronaldo celebrates after scoring hat-trick against Atletico Madrid.

TURIN, March 13: Cristiano Ronaldo scored a spectacular hat-trick to fire Juventus into the Champions League quarter-finals with a 3-0 win over Atletico Madrid on Tuesday that saw his side claim a thrilling tie 3-2 on aggregate.
The Portuguese superstar scored two headers either side of half-time and a late penalty to clinch a place in Friday’s last-eight draw with a dominant display by the Italian champions in Turin.
“It was always going to be a special night and it was, not only for the goals, but for the team,” said Ronaldo.
“This is the mentality of champions. This is why Juve brought me in, to help on magical nights like this.”
Diego Simeone’s Atletico were a shadow of the team who had run riot in the first leg in Madrid, and crashed out of the tournament they had been hoping to win in their own Wanda Metropolitano Stadium on June 1.
“The lads have shown great maturity,” said Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri.
“They interpreted the game at their best, I have to congratulate them. This is what we wanted in the first leg.
“Tonight we were lucid, there was the risk of having a hysterical match, as if everything had to be done in 10 minutes.”
It is the eighth time that Ronaldo has scored a hat-trick in the competition and mirrors his improbable treble which lifted former club Real Madrid past
Seven up for Manchester City as they demolish Schalke
Rampant Manchester City demolished a woeful Schalke 7-0 to complete a 10-2 aggregate win and become the third English side into the quarter-finals of the Champions League on Tuesday.
City’s record home win in Europe did not look likely after a quiet opening 35 minutes but once Sergio Aguero began the rout from the penalty spot it became embarrassingly easy as City reached the last eight for the third time in four years.
Aguero doubled City’s lead three minutes later and the impressive Leroy Sane made it 3-0 before halftime.
Raheem Sterling and Bernardo Silva finished off flowing moves after the break and youngster Phil Foden bagged his first European goal before Gabriel Jesus made it seven, rounding off the biggest ever Champions League defeat for a German side.
City, who trailed 2-1 in the away leg with 10 men before turning it around late on, join local rivals Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur in Friday’s quarter-final draw, the first time since 2011 that at least three English clubs are in the last eight.
Liverpool can make it a full house when they play against Bayern Munich on Wednesday.
With Real Madrid and Paris St Germain having been knocked out, Guardiola’s side will fancy their chances of going all the way for the first time in the competition. (AFP)

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