Vintage Ronaldo performance downs Celta

Cristiano Ronaldo was at his devastating best as a clinical second-half performance helped Real Madrid to a 7-1 victory over Celta Vigo at the Santiago Bernabeu on Saturday afternoon.

Celta started brightly and should have claimed the lead on 14 minutes, but Iago Aspas saw his powerful effort come back off the crossbar before firing straight into the grateful arms of Keylor Navas on the follow-up.

Real lodged their first notable effort on goal in the 22nd minute, but were denied by Celta keeper Rubén Blanco, who did well to deny Isco from just six yards out.

However, Real eventually got the breakthrough they were looking for in the 41st minute, centre-back Pepe powering home header from Isco’s inviting cross shortly after Rubén had kept out Casemiro’s goal-bound header.

Real picked up where they left off in the second half and stretched further ahead on the 50-minute mark. Ronaldo picked up the ball about 25 yards out before unleashing a powerful, swerving effort that arrowed past Rubén and into the back of the net.

The result was effectively over as contest on 58 minutes as Ronaldo struck a wonderful free-kick into the top-left corner from just outside the area.

Credit to Celta, though, because they didn’t let their heads drop and pulled one back just four minutes later, Aspas racing clear of the offside trap before lifting the ball over the onrushing Navas and into the back of the net.

However, any hopes of mounting a late comeback were quickly extinguished as Ronaldo completed his hat-trick in the 65th minute with a smart finish from close range, Isco providing the assist once again.

There was more to come from the hosts, however, as Ronaldo bagged his fourth with a powerful header in the 76th minute, before Jese added his name to the scoresheet two minutes later with a brilliant solo goal.

Celta were still reeling from Real’s sixth goal when the hosts struck again in the 81st minute, substitute Gareth Bale marking his return from injury with a well taken strike into the far corner from the edge of the area.