Cristiano Ronaldo hat-trick gives Zinedine Zidane’s side the advantage in Champions League semi-final

Cristiano Ronaldo hat-trick gives Zinedine Zidane’s side the advantage in Champions League semi-final

Sharing is caring!Facebook1Twitter0Google+0Pinterest0 The ball sat up nicely, but not that nicely. It didn’t have to fly in the way it did, it d...

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The ball sat up nicely, but not that nicely. It didn’t have to fly in the way it did, it didn’t have to be hit with such phenomenal power and accuracy. Cristiano Ronaldo does not have to make it look this easy. It’s just what he does, that’s all.

He takes centre stage, always. And the bigger that stage, the more he wants it. He is not just one of the best players to have played the game, but one of the most courageous. He never hides, he is always prepared to fail, yet rarely does. It is not just ego that drives him but valour. Of course he could lay it off; of course he could let another take the responsibility. But he never does.

It is his job to take Real Madrid to another final; it is his job to finish Atletico Madrid. And he has, barring a miraculous fightback.

Cristiano Ronaldo rises above Stefan Savic to power home the opening goal for Real Madrid inside 10 minutes

Ronaldo is mobbed  by his team-mates in front of an ecstatic Bernabeu crowd after breaking the deadlock from close range

Ronaldo smashes home his second on the volley to move Real to the brink of a third Champions League final in four years

Ronaldo's brace was too much for Atletico, who had no answer to the Real Madrid man's deadly finishing

Ronaldo stays calm to slot home from close range and complete his hat-trick with five minutes remaining

Atletico are a good team. Whether they are a 4-0 win over a Real Madrid side with Ronaldo and their wild up in the second leg, is another matter. Let’s face it, they’re not.

If the second goal looked to have done for them, the third opened the door to oblivion. At 1-0, Diego Simeone’s team were still on familiar territory. It was Ronaldo’s second of the night that has shifted them out of their comfort zone, his third that condemned them to the wilderness.

The second came after 73 minutes. Marcelo played in Karim Benzema on the edge of the area, who flicked it on to Ronaldo. Filipe Luis tried to steal it, but got rolled instead.

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