Cristiano Ronaldo reflects on 'magical night' for Juventus

Elena Summers
March 16, 2019

The Bianconeri were staring at a last 16 exit at the hands of Atletico Madrid ahead of Tuesday night's home leg, having fallen to a 2-0 defeat in the Spanish capital three weeks ago. The Italian title-holders have not won the Champions League since 1996, and have finished runners-up twice in the past four seasons.

"It was meant to be a special night and it was, not just for my goals but for the attitude we showed", said Ronaldo.

Cristiano Ronaldo was the difference maker in Turin as the club moves onto the quarterfinal stage of the Champions League keeping alive Ronaldo's potential wining streak.

"It would've been really unusual for Ronaldo to end his Champions League season with only one goal".

The financial gap between Atletico and the top European teams has been reduced significantly in recent years, and the club has gradually grown into one of the continent's main forces, providing Simeone near-perfect conditions to do his job.

Atletico, who had not conceded a goal in their previous four Champions League games, packed their defence believing they could shut Ronaldo out again.

And five-time Ballon d'Or victor, Ronaldo, pulled out a spectacular performance as he spearheaded the attack along with Federico Bernardeschi and Mario Mandzukic.


Ronaldo opened the scoring with a terrific first-half header and levelled the aggregate score four minutes into the second half.

He has scored 124 goals in the Champions League, more than Atletico in the competition (118).

Bernardeschi sent a curling free-kick just wide minutes later with Ronaldo missing a chance for a second when he headed wide.

The ball was worked to Joao Cancelo, who crossed into the penalty area for Ronaldo, whose powerful header was pushed out by Oblak but not before it had crossed over the line.

With five minutes left in regulation, Correa brought down Bernardeschi in the box and the referee awarded a penalty.

The Juventus talisman slotted home a decisive penalty late into the game that sealed a record-equalling eight hat-trick for Ronaldo in the competition as the visitors were made the pay the price for their negative tactics.

"Juventus played in a similar way to what we did in the first leg. Juventus played very well, we have to congratulate them".

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