Real Madrid 3-0 Atletico Madrid, 5 Talking Points: UEFA Champions League 2016-17
Cristiano Ronaldo came. Cristiano Ronaldo saw. Cristiano Ronaldo conquered. With a magical Ronaldo hattrick, Real Madrid decimated their local rivals 3-0... at times this looked like a throwback to a bygone era when Atleti were a struggling club just climbing out of relegation – the gulf in class on the day was that immense. As lacklustre as their visitors were, Real Madrid were incredibly impressive... and they had their most commanding (and easy on the eyes) display for quite some time. Just as it was Cristiano Ronaldo’s best performance in recent memory.
Here are five main talking points from the game:
1. Isco Disco works his magic
Here’s what Isco’s first half numbers looked like – 42 passes attempted, 42 completed. They were not your standard issue short passes either. He was everywhere as Madrid dominated the first 45, popping up on the wings to support the fullbacks at times, appearing at the head of a midfield diamond at others.
He got cautioned in the second half and got taken off by the hour mark as Zidane reverted to his trusted 4-3-3 formation, but when he was on the pitch, he was arguably the most dangerous of the 22.
A word of appreciation for Asensio, too. What a fine player that lad is, eh? He hugged the touchline as his coach had asked him to and played with a class and composure that belied his inexperience at this grand stage – that run and cross to Lucas Vazquez in the 80th minute (which his fellow sub wasted) epitomising the exciting young talent’s many qualities.