Ronaldo shines in Madrid derby: Real Madrid 3-0 Atletico Madrid
Santiago Bernabeu erupts as Real Madrid crush Atletico Madrid in UEFA Champions League Semi-Final.
When Cristiano Ronaldo netted the third one, the celebrations of the French legend on the sidelines told the whole story. The tie has pretty much been sealed and the mood of ever so calm Zinedine Zidane was enough to delineate it.
Ronaldo’s hat-trick puts Real Madrid ahead in the Champions League semi-final tie. Cristiano Ronaldo was the show stopper of the night as Real proved their dominance over their city rivals.
The much awaited Madrid Derby proved to be a completely one-sided affair at the Santiago Bernebeu in the 1st leg of Champions League semifinal. Four-time Ballon d’Or winner saved his best for the latter parts of the tournament and he now has scored 8 goals in the last 3 matches and is simply unstoppable at the moment.
Real’s fan unveiled a huge banner celebrating the 2014 and 2016 final triumphs over Atlético before kick-off. And the results after 90 minutes meant that they are in a firm position to celebrate a semifinal victory over their neighbours too.
Real Madrid attacked with the word go but Jan Oblak kept Zidane’s men at bay. The impatient Bernabéu crowd started whistling their players in the 6th minute – a thing which has always reiterated the players of Real.
In the 7th minute, Carvajal initiated a one-two from the right and stabbed a shot with the outside of his right foot that Oblak could only push into the danger area. If fell for Benzema, but he couldn’t adjust himself quickly enough to turn the ball back on target. This was the first real chance for Real Madrid.
Real got the lead in the 10th minute through Cristiano Ronaldo. It all started when Savic got a head to Ramos’ cross but it dropped for Casemiro on the right-hand side of the box – which he volleyed it back into the centre. The ball bounced off the ground and landed on Ronaldo’s head, who calmly steered it beyond Oblak to provide an early lead for Real Madrid.
The decision of the authority i.e. the decision of the referees came under the scanner once again when Marcelo claimed a penalty in the 15th minute of the match. He dribbled into the box and looked to provide a cross towards the back-post, with the ball deflected behind off an Atlético player. He claimed off a handball, but referee Atkinson waived play on.
Atlético’s defence was caught clueless in the very next minute and an excellent save from Oblak prevented the scoreline from going 2-0 up. Kroos’ corner found Varane, who powered a header towards the bottom-right corner and for a moment it seemed that Real have taken a 2 goal lead but Oblak had some other ideas. He sprang towards his left and stretched out his hand to deny Varane from registering his name on the scorer’s sheet.
After Oblak, it was Navas’ turn to show his skills. In the very next minute, Navas was called back into action when Koke slid a pass in behind Varane which Gamiero latches onto. He tried to go around the onrushing Navas, but Navas stretched out his right hand and made an important intervention.
The first half was an open game – with both the sides attacking with their full might – but Real Madrid looked more dangerous while attacking.
Koke was the only player to be booked in the first half. In the 26th minute, Koke was handed a yellow for pulling Modric as Real looked to break after clearing Koke’s poor cross.
In the 29th minute, Benzema showed some glimpses of his prime time when Ronaldo dug out a cross, and Benzema came close to adding a phenomenal finish. His overhead kick narrowly missed the target.
In the very next minute, Carvajal conceded a foul and handed Atlético a free-kick in a dangerous position. The free-kick was in a central position – nearly 30 yards from goal. Instead of directly shooting on the goal, Griezmann dropped a chip in behind the defence. Godin struggled to control a volley while stretching, blasting the ball into the stands.
The first half ended with some injury concerns for Real Madrid – Casemiro was left with a bloody lip after being caught between Ramos and Godin while defending a 40th-minute corner; Carvajal was seen limping down the tunnel and Zidane was forced to bring in Nacho after the half time.
Atlético held possession during the initial stages of the second half which prompted Isco to make a late challenge on Lucas – thus earning a Yellow Card in this process.
Saul was also shown a Yellow Card when Nacho went down after feeling the attn if Still on his shoulder.Simeone made a double change in the 57th minute – Torres replacing Gameiro and Gaitan replacing Saul.
Isco was making unnecessary tackles since registering his name on the Yellow Card – he was lucky to escape a second yellow when he caught Kore late. Simeone was furious with this decision and he made an argument in an animated fashion on the touchline. Zidane was clever enough to sense the situation and thus responded by sending on Asensio in place of Isco. Simeone made a change too – bringing in Correa in place of Carrasco.
Ronaldo doubled Real’s lead in the 73rd minute when Marcelo’s pass was controlled by Benzema, who showed great strength to hold off Godin and offload to Ronaldo. Luis tried to intervene but he couldn’t make a strong contact, with the ball looped up for CR7 to thump it home!
Real managed to find a third in the 86th minute and once again it was Ronaldo who was on target. Ronaldo dribbled in from the right and rolled a pass to Vasquez – who had earlier replaced Benzema in the 77th minute. Vasquez went past Godin and cut back to Cristiano, who took a touch before guiding home his third with a cool finish!
Atlético now needs to hit three past Real in the second leg in their home and they also need to keep a clean sheet to take the game into penalties.
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