Cristiano Ronaldo Curse Awaits Atletico Madrid as Spaniards Meet Man Utd in Champions League Last 16

© REUTERS / PETER POWELLManchester United's Cristiano Ronaldo
Manchester United's Cristiano Ronaldo  - Sputnik International, 1920, 23.02.2022
There's no other player in football history who has tasted more success than Cristiano Ronaldo in the UEFA Champions League. After all, CR7 is the top scorer in Europe's elite club competition with 140 goals to his name. Alongside his eternal rival Lionel Messi, the Portuguese talisman has also registered the most hat-tricks (8) in the tournament.
Five-time Ballon d'Or Cristiano Ronaldo has been the biggest thorn in the flesh for Atletico Madrid in the Champions League, with the legendary footballer playing a key role in their defeats in the last 10 years, particularly during a six-year spell from 2014 to 2019.
Over the years, Ronaldo has not left Atletico boss Diego Simeone bruised, but shattered as well.
Once again the Argentine manager will be wary of him as his team is set to clash with his Red Devils in the first leg of the Round of 16 tie at Wanda Metropolitano Stadium in Madrid later tonight (on Wednesday, 23 February).
In fact, the Portugal captain has been the Spanish outfit's nemesis, with Atletico losing every Champions League fixture against a side featuring CR7 during the aforementioned period, with Ronaldo leading their demolition both as a Real Madrid and a Juventus player.
The Ronaldo curse cost Los Rojiblancos dearly as their hopes of winning their maiden European title were crushed by the current Manchester United ace, who was on their city-rivals Real Madrid's payroll then, especially in 2014 and 2016 - losing in the final on both occasions.
While in 2014 Ronaldo scored the final goal in Real's emphatic 4-1 triumph over Simeone's side, it was in 2016 when he left them in tears.
With both teams concluding extra time at 1-1, the 2016 Champions League finale headed to a penalty shoot-out which turned out to be nerve-wrecking, but as usual, it was Cristiano who produced the winner, sealing the game in favour of Real as Los Blancos recorded a 5-4 victory on penalties.
To call Ronaldo's overall record against Atletico outstanding would be an understatement, as he has scored an unbelievable 25 goals in 35 appearances against them, including two hat-tricks in the Champions League.
What's worse for Atletico is that Ronaldo's Champions League record this season is as impressive as his previous seasons, as he has already netted six goals in United's five group matches.
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