Beware Atletico Madrid - Outstanding Cristiano Ronaldo Record Could Turn Champions League Tie Upside Down
Atletico Madrid are expected to cruise through to the last eight of the champions league tonight as they take on Juventus in Turin, holding a two-goal advantage from the first leg after an impressive performance in the Spanish capital. A goal apiece from their Uruguayan defensive duo, Diego Godin and Jose Gimenez was enough to give them that lead but Diego Simeone will be hoping those two can keep a clean sheet tonight, to see them through.
They will have their hands full however as they come up against none other than Cristiano Ronaldo, the greatest goalscorer in Champions League history. Atletico Madrid must be sick to the back teeth of playing against him and it appears the Portuguese enjoys playing against Real Madrid’s city rivals.
CR7 has scored 22 goals in 32 career games against Atleti, constantly a thorn in the side of Los Rojiblancos. Only Sevilla (27) and Getafe (23) have conceded more goals than Atletico Madrid at the hands of Cristiano Ronaldo, who has torn Atletico apart in the past.
Ronaldo will want to add to his 121 Champions League goals and he will have to be on top form if Juventus are to make it through to the quarter-finals of this year’s competition. This season, Ronaldo has been below par in this competition, scoring just one goal, although he does tend to come alive in the knockout stages, when at risk of elimination.
This has been his lowest goal return in this competition since 2005-06, where he was establishing himself in the Manchester United first team. Ronaldo has haunted Atletico in this competition in recent years.
In 2017, he scored a hat-trick in the second leg of a semi-final, to send Real through to the final. Whilst in the 2016 final he scored the winning penalty, whipped his shirt off and did his trademark celebration in front of the Atleti fans. That must have been Deja Vu for those fans who saw exactly the same thing in 2014, as Ronaldo converted a penalty to give Real a 4-1 win in the final.
On the other hand, Juventus have never beaten Atletico Madrid in the Champions League.
This will require another superhuman effort from Cristiano Ronaldo, but if anyone can muster up those vital goals, it is him. Don’t rule Juventus out.