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Ronaldo thwarts epic Juventus comeback to lead Real Madrid into CL semis

15 April 2018

But Madrid were given a last-gasp penalty when Mehdi Benatia bumped into Lucas Vazquez inside Juventus' area.

Real Madrid have suffered a number of nervy Champions League moments in recent seasons and could draw on a vast bank of European experience, as they survived a heart-stopping quarter-final second leg against Juventus on Wednesday.

Cristiano Ronaldo is now the first player in Champions League history to score in 11 straight games, and has put Real Madrid on his back to lead them to their record 13th Champions League semifinal.

Ronaldo admitted he had to calm himself down before stepping up and slotting home his 120th Champions League goal, followed by a shirtless celebration.

I knew we would be up against it, but I didn't expect what happened in the first minute. "It shows that nothing is a given in football, you have to fight until the end".

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At the beginning of the second leg, virtually nobody thought Juventus had a chance of overcoming that deficit against a Real Madrid side in pursuit of their third consecutive Champions League crown.

"He had a quiet night and Real Madrid had the fright of their lives, but it always seems to fall to Ronaldo".

It drew parallels with Real boss Zinedine Zidane when his France playing career ended with a sending off at the 2006 World Cup final for a headbutt on Italy defender Marco Materazzi.

The injury time penalty ensured the tie ended with fitting drama, Ronaldo beating substitute keeper Szczesny from the spot after Buffon was sent off when his protests at the spot-kick became too heated for referee Oliver. I didn't see it.

"I think they are an even better team this season than last", Zidane said.

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Paying tribute to star man Ronaldo, "Zizou" enthused, "Cristiano (Ronaldo) is used to these situations".

Real Madrid head to Malaga this weekend still on a high following their dramatic aggregate win against Juventus in the Champions League on Wednesday night. "We can only just keep doing what we are doing, keep doing our work".

The closest Real Madrid came to scoring in the first half was a shot in the final seconds by Rafael Varane that hit the cross-bar. "Anyone who says it was a robbery, I really don't agree". He scored the penalty and we got the win.

AS admitted the European champions went from "the panic to the semi-finals", while Marca simply believed: "It was a penalty".

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Ronaldo thwarts epic Juventus comeback to lead Real Madrid into CL semis