Cristiano Ronaldo's superb hat-trick helped Juventus to a 3-0 win over Atletico Madrid in the second leg of Champions League last-16 tie on Tuesday night. The forward's solo effort was enough to overturn Atletico's 2-0 first-leg advantage, securing a remarkable 3-2 win on aggregate.
Here are three things we learned from Juventus' annihilation of Atletico Madrid in Turin.
3. Juventus' Frantic Start
Juventus' desperation to win the Champions League was evident from the first kick of the ball. In front of their fans, Juventus came out all guns blazing right out of the gate and put pressure on Atletico. For the first 20 odd minutes, Atletico couldn't even get into the opposition half and committed everyone around the area to cope with Juve's onslaught.
In the 27th minute, their defence finally gave in when Cristiano Ronaldo outsmarted and outmuscled Atletico to head in Federico Bernardeschi's inch-perfect cross.
2. A Drab Atletico Display
Atletico are widely hailed as one of the most well-organised units in Europe. So, when they managed a 2-0 win in the first leg, most followers expected them to see the tie through. However, what unfolded in Turin, last night, caught everyone by surprise.
Diego Simeone's Atletico allowed Juventus more of the ball and invited them to take the initiative. After Cristiano Ronaldo's opener, the Spaniards tried to get a foothold, but by then the momentum had already shifted in the home side's favour.
1. Same Old Cristiano
When Juventus splashed the cash for Cristiano Ronaldo in the summer transfer window, they probably had hoped for some miracles in Europe's most elite cup competition. And last night, he proved exactly why the Bianconeri were so desperate to get him.
From a brave header to a nerve-wracking last-gasp penalty, Ronaldo did it all, but it wasn't just about the goals he scored, it was about his body language on the pitch, his determination. He led the Serie A giants from the front and did everything he was required to do and more.