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Ronaldo hattrick fires Real into semis

Cristiano Ronaldo scored a hattrick to become the first man to reach 100 Champions League goals as Real Madrid overcame 10-man Bayern Munich 4-2 after extra time in Tuesday’s quarter-final second leg to advance 6-3 on aggregate.

The holders will be in Friday’s semi-final draw for a record seventh consecutive year.

But they were pushed all the way by Bayern, who overcame a 2-1 first-leg deficit to send the tie into extra time thanks to Robert Lewandowski’s penalty and an own goal from Sergio Ramos.

However, after Arturo Vidal was sent off, Ronaldo hit the century mark in Europe’s top club competition on 105 minutes before then completing his hat-trick.

And Marco Asensio gave a night of high-class action the finale it deserved with a sensational solo goal to rub salt in Bayern wounds.

The German champions had been beaten on their previous four trips to Spain without even scoring a goal.

However, knowing they needed at least two to progress, Carlo Ancelotti’s men started on the front foot and were left to rue a huge opportunity just eight minutes in.

Marcelo made a miraculous block to deny Thiago Alcantara before former Real winger Arjen Robben scuffed into the side-netting on his trusted left foot.

Much like the first leg six days ago though, Madrid weathered the early storm and had plenty of chances to go in front before half-time.

Manuel Neuer’s fingertips turned Dani Carvajal’s drive behind.

Jerome Boateng then bailed out a rare mistake from his goalkeeper as he cleared off the line from Ramos after Neuer had fumbled a simple cross.

The half-time whistle brought some respite to proceedings on the field, although the Bayern fans were involved in a minor clash with local police at the break.

Security was tight at the Santiago Bernabeu in the wake of an attack on the Borussia Dortmund team bus ahead of their quarter-final first leg with Monaco last week.

Lewandowski strikes

The disturbances quickly died down and Bayern soon gave the travelling 4,000 from Germany something to cheer when play resumed.

Another goal-line clearance by Marcelo from Robben’s dinked effort temporarily saved Madrid.

But the hosts didn’t escape moments later when Viktor Kassai pointed to the spot as Robben went down under a challenge from Casemiro.

Lewandowski stayed cool under the pressure and converted from the spot for his 39th goal of the season.

Vidal was inches away from the second away goal Bayern needed as he acrobatically volleyed over before Keylor Navas dived low to his right to deny Franck Ribery.

Ronaldo looked to have eased Madrid’s nerves when he steered Casemiro’s cross into the far corner 14 minutes from time.

However, Real’s celebrations were very short-lived as just two minutes later the ball ricocheted around their box and Ramos turned into his own net.

The balance of a topsy-turvy tie turned Madrid’s way again with five minutes remaining as just as in the first leg, Bayern were reduced to 10 men when Vidal saw a second yellow card for chopping down Asensio.

The extra man proved decisive as Madrid settled the tie with a three-goal burst in seven minutes either side of half-time in extra time.

Ronaldo took advantage at not being flagged for offside as he controlled and fired low past Neuer to become the first man to reach a Champions League century.

Five minutes into the second period of extra time he had Marcelo to thank for a brilliant run and unselfish pass that allowed the Portuguese the simplest of finishes to complete his hat-trick.

And Asensio sealed victory in sensational style with a stunning solo run and low right-footed finish as many Bayern players sank to their knees knowing Champions League glory had passed them by for another year.

Source: Daily Sun, Dhaka, Bangladesh

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