Real Madrid Phenom Rodrygo Makes History with Hat-Trick Against Galatasaray

Rodrygo is proving age is but a number while making history…

The 18-year-old Brazilian soccer player and Real Madrid forward scored a blistering hat-trick as his team pummeled Galatasaray 6-0 at home on Wednesday to take a giant step towards qualifying for the Champions League knockout stages.

Rodrygo

Rodrygo put the 13-times European champions ahead in the fourth minute by turning two defenders in the area and firing into the bottom corner to score for the first time in Europe’s elite competition.

Rodrygo struck again in the seventh by nodding home a cross from compatriot Marcelo, completing the fastest double in Champions League history.

Real Madrid didn’t ease off after their rampant start and extended their lead in the 13th minute with a typically cheeky ‘Panenka‘ penalty from captain Sergio Ramos.

Karim Benzema netted their fourth on the stroke of halftime, knocking the ball into the net after another thrilling piece of play from Rodrygo.

Benzema struck again from close range in the second half to move on to 50 Champions League goals for his club, moving ahead of Real great Alfredo Di Stefano as the Spanish side’s third top scorer in Europe’s top competition.

But the night belonged to Rodrygo, who rounded off a dream home European debut at the Santiago Bernabeuby completing his treble in added time, racing towards goal and exchanging passes with Benzema before tapping into the net.

Rodrygo, who became the second-youngest player to score a hat-trick in the Champions League after Real great Raul, was serenaded by the home crowd.

“Hearing the Bernabeu singing my name is a dream come true,” Rodrygo said. “I’m so happy, it has been a joyous night but I must try and stay calm.”

Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane praised the youngster’s performance.

“When he has the chance to play, he plays well and he’s done it again,” Zidane said. “It doesn’t surprise me, we all know the quality he has. He came here to do what he’s doing. This is just the beginning. Let’s hope he carries on like this. We need to stay calm with him.”

Real Madrid, who picked up only one point from their first two games in the competition, are second in Group A with seven points from four matches.

Their next opponents Paris Saint-Germain are at the top with 12, with Club Brugge third on two and Galatasaray bottom on one.

Victory over PSG, who have reached the last 16, would send Real Madrid into the knockout stage with a game to spare.

Vinicius Junior Scores a Goal to Help Put Real Madrid Atop the La Liga Standings

Vinicius Junior helps lead Real Madrid to victory…

The 19-year-old Brazilian professional footballer and his compatriot Rodrygo sent Real Madrid to the top of La Liga as both scored in a 2-0 win over Osasuna on Wednesday.

Vinicius Junior

Vinicius ended a goal drought which had dragged on since February with a deflected effort in the first half from the edge of the box.

Zinedine Zidane started a heavily rotated XI with Karim BenzemaEden Hazard and Thibaut Courtois all on the bench, and the hosts went close twice inside of 20 minutes with Luka Jovic firing over the crossbar from close range and Toni Kroos just missing a golazo from distance soon after.

Osasuna had their chances, but Real Madrid were the first to score on 35 minutes when Vinicius Jr. picked up a pass from Kross, cut to his right and fired an unstoppable shot past Ruben to give his team a 1-0 lead at the break.

Jovic made a mess of a clear-cut chance to double Madrid’s lead just after the break, somehow flashing his shot over the bar for a second time after Lucas Vazquez had set him up with a one-on-one against Ruben.

The Serbian looked to have made amends just before the hour mark, slotting home from another Vazquez assist, but Jovic, still in search of his first goal since joining Los Blancos, was adjudged to be slightly offside on the play after video review and the goal was waved off.

Rodrygo, the summer arrival from Santos, finally gave Real Madrid their second, settling a long ball over the top of the Osasuna defense with a sublime first touch and racing into the penalty area to slot home a far post shot for the 2-0 lead.

Real Madrid climbed to the top of the standings with 14 points from six games, one point and one place ahead of Atletico Madrid, whom they face on Saturday in the derby at the Wanda Metropolitano.

“We’re really pleased with the result, the work we put in and for the win,” said Real winger Vazquez.

“I’m really happy for (Vinicius), he’s a great lad, he works hard and I’m super happy for him.”

Messi’s Hat-Trick Leads Barcelona to a 4-3 Win Over Real Madrid

It’s a clasico moment for Lionel Messi and his Barcelona teammates…

Futbol Club Barcelona is now within one point of Real Madrid at the top of La Liga as the team came from behind twice thanks to a hat-trick from the 26-year-old Argentine soccer star.

Lionel Messi

Messi miraculous play helped Barcelona to a thrilling El Clasico win at the Santiago Bernabeu by a final score of 4-3.

Both sides went in tied at 2-2 at halftime as a record 19th goal against Madrid from Messi cancelled out Karim Benzema‘s double after Andres Iniesta had put Barca in front.

Cristiano Ronaldo then put Madrid back in front from the penalty spot, but the hosts were reduced to 10-men when Sergio Ramos pulled down Neymar inside the box 10 minutes later and Messi leveled once more from the spot.

And the Argentine won the game with another penalty seven minutes from time after Iniesta had been felled by Xabi Alonso.

A first defeat for Real in 32 games means Atletico Madrid remains atop the standings thanks to their better head-to-head record against Los Blancos with Barca still in third.

“The league starts a new now,” said Barca boss Gerardo Martino.
”More than the mathematical distance we were behind, the impression was people wrote us off. Atletico Madrid were always in the fight and I think that after this result we are too. We knew if we didn’t win tonight it was over for us. We still don’t have matters in our own hands, but we’ll now fight till the end.”

Messi Could Pick Up a Fourth FIFA Ballon d’Or Award

Lionel Messi has the chance to make soccer history…

The 25-year-old Argentine fútbol star, who just claimed his second Golden Boot award, is among the 23 players in the running for the 2012 FIFA Ballon d’Or award.

Lionel Messi

Should he come out on top, Messi, who made history by claiming the award the last three years in a row, would become the only player to claim the award four times.

But Messi will face stiff competition from several noted players, including Cristiano Ronaldo and Xavi Hernandez, this year’s runners-up for the world’s best player award.

Here’s a look at the nominees:

Real Madrid Players:
Cristiano Ronaldo
Iker Casillas
Mesut Ozil
Karim Benzema
Sergio Ramos
Xabi Alonso

Barcelona Players:
Lionel Messi
Andres Iniesta
Sergio Busquets
Gerard Pique
Xavi Hernandez

Atletico Madrid Player:
Radamel Falcao

Manchester City Players:
Mario Balotelli
Sergio Aguero
Yaya Toure

Manchester United Players:
Wayne Rooney
Robin van Persie

Juventus Players:
Andrea Pirlo
Gianluigi Buffon

Shanghai Shenhua Player:
Didier Drogba

PSG Player:
Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Bayern Munich Player:
Manuel Neuer

Santos Player:
Neymar

The final three candidates will be revealed on November 29 in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

The Ballon d’Or ceremony will take place in Zurich on January 7, 2013, when the player who receives the most votes from coaches and captains of international teams, as well as reporters, will be announced.