It’s been a Champions League of surprises. Real Madrid have been knocked out by Ajax which marked an early upset along with Paris Saint Germain who lost to United 3-3 on away goals after registering a 2-0 victory at Old Trafford in the first leg. Today might result in the exit of another big name, Juventus who were defeated 2-0 away to Atletico Madrid at the Wanda Metropolitano 3 weeks ago. Star summer signing Cristiano Ronaldo is hoping that his passion and dedication for the beautiful game will be acting as a boost as Juventus look to stay in the competition in a must win tie.
Ronaldo is no stranger to the competition and is the record goalscorer and has been a regular thorn for the Atletico Madrid side having scored 22 times in 31 games against Atletico during his stay in Madrid. His penalty in the dying moments of injury time last year resulted in Juventus crashing out in the quarter finals. Juventus are not in mood to face another early exit from the competition once again and will be looking to fight it out tooth and nail in the second leg in Turin. A proven goalscorer, Ronaldo has proved his mettle in Portugal, England and Spain and Juventus are looking up to him to help them progress to the quarter finals by producing another of his magical performances in front of the goal.
The Portuguese international who’s now in his early 30’s has scored 697 goals in 984 games in his career till date and he’s looking forward to add further goals to that tally tonight. In an interview with Juventus TV, he told the following:
“I have no secrets, just my dedication and my passion for this sport, I love to play football more than anything else. I have enjoyed myself in Portugal, England and Spain and I am now doing so in Italy. For me, it is a pleasure to score goals and to help my team win. I am happy.Everyone knows that they are a strong team, they defend very well, they do not take a lot of risks and they play on the counter-attack, but we are ready, and we will do everything we can to beat them.”
Juventus are still unbeaten in Serie A after 27 matchdays which speak volumes of their domestic dominance and they would like to build on their form in Europe. Atletico meanwhile are unbeaten in their last 5 matches across all competitions are looking forward to progress to the quarter finals once again and it has been over 7 years since Atletico lost to an Italian team away from their home.
Simeone in a press conference told: “They (Juventus) are a very strong team with top players in every position.We have to stay calm, be humble and know that we are playing a very strong side.These kinds of ties are divided in two halves, one at home and one away. We will try to take the match in the direction we want it to go.”
The result can go either ways especially when Cristiano Ronaldo is on the other side and the tie is still very much open but slightly in favour of Atletico Madrid. An exciting game is on the cards tonight.