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Hat-trick Hero

Rio Ferdinand runs out of superlatives for Cristiano Ronaldo after Champions League heroics

The BT Sport pundit was full of praise for his former Manchester United teammate after Champions League hat-trick

Cristiano Ronaldo’s pretty good, isn’t he?

Or, as Rio Ferdinand joked on BT Sport this evening: “I think he’s got a future in the game…”

Ronaldo was the difference for Real Madrid this evening

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Ronaldo was the difference for Real Madrid this evening

Ronaldo was, once again, the difference for Real Madrid as he scored all three goals in their Champions League semi-final victory against bitter rivals Atletico.

The Portuguese forward has now scored 103 goals in European competition, and holds the record for the most amount of goals in Champions League semi-final history with 11.

What’s more, this evening’s hattrick is Ronaldo’s 42nd for Los Blancos.

Unbelievable stuff.

Rio Ferdinand was brimming with praise for his former Manchester United teammate

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Rio Ferdinand was brimming with praise for his former Manchester United teammate

Ferdinand said we won’t understand what Ronaldo has done for football until after he retires

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Ferdinand said we won’t understand what Ronaldo has done for football until after he retires

And after the match, Ferdinand was full of praise for the 32-year-old.

He said: “When he retires we’ll really understand what this guy has done for football.

“He’s got that experience now. He knows what he needs to do in the big games and have that cutting edge and make the difference. He does it with his eyes closed.

“You can see this guy is relentless. I spoke to him in midweek, ‘what is it that actually makes you who you are?

“Hard work and determination is all he said. And it’s true, it’s the basics that got him where he is and then it’s the talent that separates him.”

Ronaldo celebrates his third goal with his teammates

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Ronaldo celebrates his third goal with his teammates

Ronaldo was the hero on the night as Real made easy work of their city rivals.

Zinedine Zidane’s men will go into next week’s second leg clash with a 3-0 lead, and certainly look like the favourites to reach this season’s final.