Cristiano Ronaldo banged in a hat-trick against the visitors to the Bernabeu to give Atletico Madrid a massive mountain to climb on Wednesday evening. No side has managed to overturn a two-goal deficit at this stage of the competition but Atletico need to claw their way back from three goals down, against Real Madrid of all sides. Indeed Real look very much on course to reach their third appearance in the final of the Champions League in four seasons, however will they head to Cardiff next month or will the home side make history this week and turn things around?
The history books would lead us to suggest that it will be the former. Atletico don’t enjoy a good head-to-head record against their more illustrious city neighbours, especially in this competition. The Madrid sides have met twice in the last three finals of the tournament and Real have run-out winners on both occasions. We expect a similar outcome on Wednesday evening.
Indeed Real don’t need to win this week but we believe that they will. With attacking talent in abundance they certainly won’t be sitting back and while the hosts will need to push forward and look for goals, Real will get them on the break and secure their place in the final in style by winning at the Vicente Calderon.
Ronaldo is the man to watch on the goalscoring front, his hat-trick at the Vicente Calderon earlier in the season being followed by another in the semi-final first-leg. The Portuguese marksman is the leading goalscorer in the Champions League and we don’t believe that his goals will dry-up on Wednesday evening.