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Manchester City in Champions League semi-finals for first time; Ronaldo hat-trick fires Real Madrid into semis

Wednesday, Apr 13, 2016,11:20 IST By metrovaartha A A A

Madrid | Cristiano Ronaldo inspired Real Madrid to a record sixth successive Champions League semi-final with a hat-trick as the Spanish giants overturned a 2-0 first leg deficit, beating Wolfsburg 3-0 on Tuesday.

Also, Manchester City reached the Champions League semi-finals for the first time after Kevin De Bruyne’s fine 76th-minute goal earned them a 1-0 win over Paris Saint-Germain.

Ronaldo struck twice in just over a minute to bring Madrid level in the tie inside 17 minutes.

Yet, the 10-time winners were forced to wait until 13 minutes from time to find the winner when Ronaldo’s dipping free-kick escaped the clutches of Diego Benaglio to find the bottom corner.

Cristiano deserved a magic night, said Madrid captain Sergio Ramos. We need him, he gives everything for the shirt. For a long time he has shown he is the number one and when he is on form you notice.

Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane hailed his side’s collective effort, but reserved special praise for Ronaldo who became the first player to score three hat-tricks in the competition in one season.

Madrid hadn’t overturned a first-leg deficit in the Champions League in eight attempts stretching back 14 years to when Zidane played for Los Blancos in a quarter-final win over Bayern Munich.

A week on from their 2-2 draw in the French capital, City saw Sergio Aguero squander a first-half penalty after he had been felled by PSG goalkeeper Kevin Trapp, but De Bruyne’s late strike settled the Etihad Stadium nerves and completed a 3-2 aggregate success.

Fifteen points off the pace in the Premier League and widely considered the tie’s underdogs, City advance with hope intact that manager Manuel Pellegrini may yet bow out with a Champions League winner’s medal around his neck before handing over to Pep Guardiola.

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