Ronaldo nets hat trick to send Juventus into Champions League quarterfinals

Ronaldo nets hat trick to send Juventus into Champions League quarterfinals

Cristiano Ronaldo scored a hat-trick as Juventus staged a stunning comeback win to overturn a first-leg deficit and beat Atletico Madrid 3-0 in Turin to reach the Champions League quarterfinals.

Trailing 2-0 on aggregate from the first leg in Madrid, Juventus ran out 3-0 winners thanks to an inspired performance from their Portuguese talisman as he scored a headed double and a late penalty to sink Atletico.

It was an incredible game that, predictably, had Atletico’s long-term tormentor Ronaldo at its heart.

The Portuguese was brought to Italy from Real Madrid for in excess of $100 million in the summer for nights like this, and he delivered in spectacular fashion to lead his team into the last eight.

It was a game that Juve dominated throughout, and they thought they had got off to the prefect start inside four minutes when Giorgio Chielleni turned home the ball from a corner after Atletico ‘keeper Jan Olblak had fumbled.

But after consultation with the VAR referee Bjorn Kuipers ruled Cristiano Ronaldo had poked the ball out Oblak’s hands, leaving the Portuguese number 7 fuming.

Juve continued to dominate the opening stages against the Spanish visitors’ notoriously stingy defense, and got the breakthrough their dominance deserved on 27 minutes when Ronaldo powered home a header at the back post, outjumping Juanfran from a pin-point Federico Bernardeschi cross.

The tie was level, Ronaldo was rampant, and Atletico were on the ropes.

While the Spaniards belatedly began to come out of their shell, they were there for the taking, and substitute Moise Kean spurned a golden chance to seal it moments after coming on inside the last 10 minutes, when he raced through onto a through-ball, only to shoot agonizingly wide of the upright.

But shortly after on 86 minutes came the coup de grace for Ronaldo when Bernardeschi was bundled over in the box, setting the stage for Ronaldo to seal it for Juve.

He stepped up to blast the spot-kick past Oblak for this third of the night, and Juve saw out the game to send the Old Lady faithful into delirium.

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