Cristiano Ronaldo hits hat-trick... so Lionel Messi goes one better


Click to follow
The Independent Football

Cristiano Ronaldo scored his 20th career hat-trick to help Real Madrid rout Getafe 4-0 last night before Lionel Messi outdid him by netting four times in Barcelona's 5-1 thrashing of Osasuna.

Both players were in insatiable form ahead of their sides' upcoming Copa del Rey semi-final first leg at the Bernabeu on Wednesday.

Messi is on target to break his own Spanish league record of 50 goals from last season. The 25-year-old forward leads the league with 33 goals in 21 games, chased by Ronaldo on 21 goals.

Barcelona maintained their 15-point advantage over Real, and opened up an 11-point gap over Atletico Madrid, who were beaten 3-0 away at Athletic Bilbao.

"It will be a tough game," Ronaldo said of the cup tie against their rivals. "Barcelona is a fantastic team. We will be missing several important players [Iker Casillas, Pepe, Angel Di Maria], but that is not an excuse. It will be a great night."

In Italy, Edinson Cavani scored with five minutes remaining to help Napoli to a 2-1 victory at Parma. Marek Hamsik had given the visitors the lead on 20 minutes before Paolo Cannavaro put through his own net. The victory allowed Napoli to close the gap on leaders Juventus to three points, after the Old Lady had been held to a 1-1 draw at home to struggling Genoa on Saturday night. Juve were denied two strong penalty claims. Third-placed Lazio lost 1-0 at home to Chievo while Milan triumphed 1-0 at Atalanta. Internazionale were held 2-2 by Torino.

Bayern Munich extended their lead at the top of the Bundesliga to 11 points with a comfortable 2-0 win at Stuttgart. Second-half goals from Mario Mandzukic and Thomas Müller were enough for the league leaders, unbeaten in all competitions since October. Hamburg beat nine-man Werder Bremen 3-2.