Ronaldo’s hat-trick lifts Real as Barca trio wait on Ballon d’Or
Monday 10 January 2011
Cristiano Ronaldo got a hat-trick as Real Madrid came from behind last night to beat Villarreal 4-2 at the Bernabeu and stay two points behind leaders Barcelona in La Liga.
Ronaldo twice equalised for the home side in the first half and fired them in front in the 79th minute, before setting up substitute Kaka for the fourth near the end.
Cani had fired Villarreal in front after only seven minutes but Ronaldo equalised two minutes later, tapping in from Mesut Ozil's low cross. Marco Ruben broke the Real offside trap to lob Iker Casillas in the 18th minute but again Ronaldo levelled, heading in from close range at a free-kick just before the break.
Real gradually tightened their grip on the game and it was Ronaldo who reacted quickest in a goalmouth scramble to score late in the second half. He then raced down the left and crossed for Kaka to get his first goal this season since returning from injury.
Barcelona won 4-0 at Deportivo La Coruña on Saturday and will have another cause for celebration tonight, when one of Andres Iniesta, Lionel Messi or Xavi will be crowned the winner of the Fifa Ballon d'Or in Zurich.
Two of the Ballon d'Or nominees, Iniesta and Messi, scored in the rout. David Villa and Pedro were also on target for Barça, who have now scored 84 goals this season in all competitions.
In Italy, Serie A leaders Milan needed a 93rd-minute strike from forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic to salvage a point in a thrilling 4-4 draw with Udinese at San Siro yesterday. Argentine striker German Denis's 89th-minute goal looked set to condemn the Rossoneri to their third league defeat at home this season, before Antonio Cassano, with his second late assist in as many games for his new club, sublimely set up Ibrahimovic for the stoppage-time equaliser.
Leonardo's great start as Internazionale manager continued, his resurgent team coming back from a goal down to gain a hard-fought 2-1 victory at Catania.
Britain First criticised for using actress's memory to draw attention to their 'hate-filled home page'
Emergency call 'started off dumb, but got pretty serious'
Greatest mystery about the hit BBC1 show is how it continues to be made at all, writes Grace Dent
"History is violent," says the US Army tank commander Don "Wardaddy" Collier
Latest in Sport
Cristiano Ronaldo applauded by Liverpool fans after master-class for Real Madrid, despite Manchester United ties
Angel Di Maria injury latest: Argentina international set to play in Manchester United vs Chelsea match
Real Madrid vs Barcelona: Cristiano Ronaldo says he is playing Barca - not just Lionel Messi - in El Clasico
Paul Scholes column: I'm not worried about Manchester United's defence - Chelsea test can be the making of Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo
Diego Costa injury: Chelsea striker forced into hospital ahead of Manchester United clash - reports
- 1 This 'woman calls police to order pizza' story isn't going where you're expecting
- 2 Axe wielding man shot dead after attacking four New York policemen on busy street
- 3 Watch what happened when food critics were unknowingly served McDonald's
- 4 Jimmy Carr's Oscar Pistorius joke goes a bit too far at the Q Awards
- 5 Ottawa shootings: Bruce MacKinnon's cartoon is the perfect tribute to soldier Nathan Cirillo
Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Support for EU membership 'at highest level since 1991' with most Brits wanting to stay 'in'
Thousands with degenerative conditions classified as 'fit to work in future' – despite no possibility of improvement
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Attacks on 'Ukip Calypso' show how skewed people’s priorities are