Ronaldo returns to haunt Atletico Madrid as Juventus book quarters slot
Cristiano Ronaldo bagged his fourth hat-trick against Atletico Madrid and equaled Lionel Messi's UEFA Champions League record of eight hat-tricks as he single-handedly sent Juventus to the quarterfinals with a 3-0 win and 3-2 on aggregate.
Juventus came into the tie looking to overturn a 2-0 deficit while Atletico Madrid were seeking to bank again on their resolute defense and hang on to the two-goal advantage. The game was off to an electric start as Juventus thought they had grabbed an early lead three minutes in when Giorgio Chiellini stabbed the ball home but the goal was ruled out after VAR judged Cristiano Ronaldo to have impeded Jan Oblak.
Madrid finally settled into the game after a shaky start and had their first real opening in the 23rd minute when Antoine Griezmann tested the palms of Szczesny with a ferocious shot from outside the 18-yard area, the goalkeeper parried it away but the flag went up after Morata was offside.
The Bianconeri finally got the breakthrough after waves of attack in the 26th minute when Bernadeschi curled in a great cross to the back post as Mandzukic took Godin with him to the near post that inturn allowed Ronaldo to leap for glory up against Juanfran to fire a bullet header past Oblak.
Juventus had a mirror start to the second half and grabbed the lead three minutes after the resumption when Joao Cancello whipped in a delicious cross that was nodded in by Ronaldo despite Oblak's best effort to keep it out as goal-line technology judged the ball to have crossed the ball.
Juventus were rewarded for their second-half pressure when Angel Correra clipped the heels of Bernadeschi inside the box with the referee pointing to the spot. Ronaldo was tasked the penalty duties and he held his nerve to score, sending Oblak the wrong way to equal Lionel Messi's eight hat-tricks in the Champions League.