Cristiano Ronaldo’s Champions League mission with Juventus slowed down on Wednesday as Atletico Madrid verified a merited 2-0 triumph from an exciting first leg at the Wanda Metropolitano.
Ronaldo came back to the Spanish capital, where he appreciated uncommon accomplishment in this competition with Real, yet it was their opponents celebrating at the last whistle as objectives from Jose Gimenez and Diego Godin put Atletico inside sight of the quarter-finals.
This was a triumph that Diego Simeone’s side completely merited. Antoine Griezmann had hit the crossbar while VAR twice mediated, effectively, to support Juve, dropping a first-half punishment for a foul on Diego Costa and after that decision out an Alvaro Morata header in no time before Gimenez struck.
Juve are positively not dead and covered yet, especially given Costa and Thomas Partey will both be suspended for the arrival in Turin after each got yellow cards here.
Yet, the inability to score an away goal, and their reasonable mediocrity for a significant part of the second half, does not look good for their expectations of a rebound.
Annihilation in the last 16 for either group would be inconceivable, for Atletico, who realize the last will be played here, at their very own arena, on June 1, the ideal opportunity to wrestle the trophy off Real in the very city they share.
What’s more, for Juventus, whose hang tight for Europe’s chief prize has now entered its 23rd year, when desires are higher than at any other time given they presently gloat the competition’s most productive ever player.
Ronaldo, however, endured through a disillusioning night, choked from the beginning as he was clacked by Godin and afterward outmuscled by Juanfran down the left.
Maybe disappointment made him wave five fingers toward the bedeviling Atletico swarm, apparently to connote his five Champions League triumphs.
His best commitment was an early, determined free-kick from 30 yards, that must be pushed over by Jan Oblak, and the sham shot before it, that uncovered Costa as infringing, for which he got his yellow card.
Costa was his bristling self and nearly won a penalty when referee Felix Zwayer thought he was stumbled by Mattia de Sciglio. Be that as it may, VAR indicated he had overstated the contact as well as broadened his keep running into the territory.
Whatever is left of the half was more tightly yet Atletico had two brilliant open doors from the get-go in the second. In the first place, Griezmann volleyed Costa in behind yet the Spaniard sidefooted wide with just Wojciech Szczesny to beat.
At that point, the ball was in Griezmann’s court, this time Szczesny interceding, tipping the Frenchman’s throw onto the crossbar before Giorgio Chiellini prevented Costa from achieving the bounce back.
Atletico were pushing and it was Morata, on for Costa, who had the effect. He fueled in a splendid header just to see it discounted for a push however he was not dissuaded, and when Juve neglected to clear his thump down at a corner, Gimenez was perfectly placed.
Juve were shaken and their inability to rally could cost them dear. Atletico scored again as Godin rose to head in at the close post, just to turn and discover Mario Mandzukic had cleared the ball to his feet. The point was tight yet the net was open.
Juve may had grabbed an away objective late on however Oblak pushed over Federico Bernardeschi’s shot. They have everything to do.