Cristiano Ronaldo’s ‘Playstation goal’ is talk of the world
He’d already scored a record 118 Champions League goals but this one was different.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s soaring, otherworldly overhead kick from the clouds, elicited a standing ovation from the opposition Juventus supporters and left even his Real Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane awestruck.
It was, Ronaldo himself said, “probably the best” of his entire career.
“It was spectacular,” reflected the Portuguese forward after Real had all but ended Juve’s Champions League dream with a 3-0 first leg victory. “I jumped very high and it’s a goal that will live long in the memory.
“I’ve been looking to do it for a while, but it depends on the circumstances of the game. I tried it today and it came off.”
Ronaldo, who had given Real an early first-half lead, had been the subject of aggressive jeers from the Juventus faithful earlier in the night during their quarterfinal clash, but suddenly the 41,507 inside the Allianz Stadium were rising to their feet as one.
“It was one of the most poignant moments of the night,” said Ronaldo. “To receive applause from a stadium like this, which has been graced by great players, is a unique experience.
“When I was a kid, I liked Juventus and the fact that their fans have clapped me will stay with me.”
‘A PlayStation goal’
Talk of Ronaldo so often centers on the numbers that define his career.
He has scored 39 goals in 36 games for Real Madrid this season — more than anyone else in Europe’s top five leagues — with 19 of those coming in his past nine outings.
But this was a moment that had people gasping and then asking whether Ronaldo had just scored the world’s greatest ever goal.
Stricken Juventus defender Andrea Barzagli hinted at the craftsmanship of the strike, gasping his opponent had “made it up.”
“It’s a PlayStation goal,” said the Italian defender. “When you come up against one of the best in the world like Ronaldo, you need to be perfect. If you give him any space, he’ll punish you.
“He scored a goal that will go down in history – and unfortunately it was against us.”
Others deemed the act from another planet entirely.
“Ronaldo can now leave Earth and play with Martians,” tweeted former Real Madrid defender Alvaro Arbeloa. “He has done everything here.”
Legendary goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon, whom Ronaldo has beaten with nine of past 11 shots on target, called his conqueror an “extraordinary champion … to be compared to Maradona and Pele.”
Zidane himself, scorer of another from the pantheon of great goals 16 years ago in the Champions League final for Real against Bayer Leverkusen, said “he’s a different player to everyone else.”
But, asked whose famous goal tops the lot, the Real Madrid coach was less effusive.
“Oh mine!” laughed Zidane. “Definitely mine.”