Spanish press react to Cristiano Ronaldo's hat-trick ahead of Atletico Madrid tie
Cristiano Ronaldo reminded the Premier League why he is revered worldwide as the greatest goalscorer of all time at the weekend with a stunning hat-trick against Tottenham.
Over in Spain they never need reminding, with Ronaldo scoring more than 60 goals in a single season twice, on the way to leading Real Madrid to four Champions League titles.
Atletico Madrid have conceded 25 goals to Ronaldo over the years and visit Manchester United on Tuesday night for a decisive second leg knockout clash with the scores tied at 1-1.
Understandably, Ronaldo’s latest feats for United are causing some concern in Spain…
Spain hails Ronaldo
Marca reported: “His voracity is insatiable: he has already accumulated 49 hat-tricks at club level. Tottenham had no choice but to ‘give up’ in the face of CR7’s punch.”
AS wrote how Ronaldo ‘returned in style’, noting how United are now, “A team that next Tuesday faces Atlético de Madrid in the second leg of the Champions League round of 16 with the star from Madeira at his best level.”
The paper added that ‘no praise was spared’ for Ronaldo as teammates and former players alike lined up to laud his performance.
A separate AS editorial led with the headline, ‘Cristiano scares Atletico’, writing, “He sharpened his aim before the visit of Atlético de Madrid on Tuesday in the Champions League.”
Mundo Deportivo wrote: “Cristiano Ronaldo responded to his detractors fiercely. A hat trick against Tottenham was enough to end criticism of his form.”
Now to follow it up…
Ronaldo’s performance in the first leg against Atletico was not his best, and he was not alone there either. None of United’s 11 starters on the night performed well and it was down to the substitutes to provide some impetus, and an equaliser.
He will be keen to make up for it at Old Trafford and the win over Tottenham was the best possible way to warm up for it.
Ronaldo has six goals in six Champions League games this season and will want to add to that. His hat-trick at the weekend was the perfect way to galvanise the crowd for this Tuesday’s game and Old Trafford will be ready for another super show from the legendary forward.
His reputation alone combined with his performance on Saturday will make Atletico extra fearful, and this will create opportunities for his teammates too. United have to get a win in this game and one way or another, Ronaldo will be essential to securing it.