Real Madrid took an enormous step in the defense of their Champions League title by drubbing Juventus 3-0 on Tuesday night at the Juventus Stadium.
The result leaves Massimiliano Allegri’s side with a mountain to climb ahead of next week’s return fixture at the Santiago Bernabeu, so much for the huge goal difference as it is for being on the wrong end of the away goal rule.
For Real Madrid however, it was just another day in the office as the 12-time European Champions exhibited yet another top drawer performance in the knockout stages of the Champions League.
All indicators pointed towards a seminal night for the Italian champions when Cristiano Ronaldo opened his account for the evening after just three minutes.
Already in the history books for becoming the first player to score in ten consecutive Champions League matches, the four-time Ballon d’Or winner would not be denied, as he doubled the advantage with a spectacular bicycle kick midway through the second half.
Paulo Dybala’s sending off minutes later after a second bookable offense turned matters from bad to worse, as the visitors used the numbers gain to full effect with a third goal by Marcelo.
Whereas the Old Lady had veteran players in their line-up, Champions League experience counted for everything for the Spanish champions.
Star studded side
Real Madrid without question boasts of one of the most expensively assembled squad in world football- if not the most expensively assembled.
Money often seems to burn a hole in their pockets and the boardroom strategy to sign a ‘galactico’ every summer- a bold move inculcated at the turn of the millennium- is assuredly paying massive dividends, more so with their recent European success.
The plethora of talent in the squad coupled with the composure and surety that comes with European success in three of the last four seasons makes Real Madrid utterly indestructible.
Big match winners
Despite having a richly talented squad, the ultimate defining factor that makes Real Madrid stand head and shoulder above other Europeans powerhouses is the individual brilliance of the characters in the team.
Big names are no good when they cannot deliver on the big occasion, which is why having calm, self driven figures like Marcelo, Luka Modric and above all else Cristiano Ronaldo, makes the Los Blancos truly imperious on the European front.
Written by Brian Humphrey
Follow Brian on Twitter @brihum
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