Zinedine Zidane’s comments about Ronaldo being the “clear” front runner for the Ballon D’or this week were bringing doubts and unrealistic head-shakes in the football world as he scored one goal in his last five games for the Los Blancos. Those doubters were silenced today as the Portuguese star secured three points for his team and three goals for himself as Real Madrid came from behind to win comfortably 4-1 in Vitoria.
The hosts took the lead through some sloppy work from Real Madrid losing the ball and launching a counter attack. A low cross fizzed in found Deyverson, who exploited some shambolic defending and finished off the move in the 7th minute. Deyverson had also scored early in September against Barcelona and was having a mixed game as he was held culprit for raising his hands in the air, inside the penalty box from a Gareth Bale free-kick.
Ronaldo stepped up and sent the keeper the wrong way, bringing Real Madrid on level terms with a well taken penalty and a trademark goal celebration.
Real Madrid’s Pepe picked up an innocuous-looking injury in the 24th minute but were in front just few minutes later.
The eleven time Champions League winners began setting the pace for the game and were rewarded soon enough. Just after the half hour mark Ronaldo let fly from long range after a one-two with Karim Benzema and found the net with the help of a deflection of Zouhair Fedda.
The score remained 2-1 in favor of the visitors at half time, and though Deportivo Alaves started the second half with a high intensity and almost equalized two minutes within the restart.
Victor Camarasa managed to get past Varane with some smart work only to be denied by the onrushing Navas and the Real Madrid shot stopper was wanted again to keep Deyverson from getting a second from 20 yards out.
Real continued to dominate proceedings but were always looked vulnerable to the counter attack that Alaves poised.
That threat though seemingly past away when Real Madrid were given a second penalty for a shirt pull on Ronaldo, although this time the Portuguese ace couldn’t beat the Alaves keeper as Pacheco guessed the right way and managed to keep his team still in the tie.
Despite Pacheco’s best efforts though, the Spanish keeper couldn’t keep the scoreline down as Real piled on the pressure and Alvaro Morata grabbed Real’s third as he calmly lifted the ball over Pacheco after a long pass from left back Marcelo.
To add a fourth and complete his hat-trick was ever-present Cristiano Ronaldo as Marcelo claimed another assist in the game. Making amends for his missed spot kick he finished expertly again as he beat Pacheco with a fierce drive to claim three goals and three points for his team.
Ronaldo now has 31 La Liga hat-tricks in 243 Liga appearances and he set another personal milestone by completing 350 career league goals.