Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane lauded his team after thwarting Juventus 4-1 on Saturday (3/05/17) to become the first club to retain the UEFA Champions League since its inception.
“It’s been a spectacular year, you couldn’t dream of anything better. We won the (Spanish) league on the very last day. It’s very difficult to reach the Champions League final two years running, but we did that.
“The first half was difficult, but in the second we were quickly superior. We pressed a lot more and physically we won the game there too, so I’m very happy,” said Zidane.
Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice and enabled Real Madrid win the title for the third time in four years and 12th in all.
Ronaldo hit Real’s first and third goals to become only the second man to score in three European Cup finals and take his career goal tally to 600 for club and country, according to AFP.
Few of those will have matched Mario Mandzukic’s spectacular overhead equaliser for Juventus, which was eventually in vain for the Italian side who had the best of the first half before being swept aside in the second.
A long-range deflected effort by Casemiro and a neat finish by the irrepressible Ronaldo within four minutes effectively settled one of the most entertaining finals for years, with a late tap-in by substitute Marco Asensio adding the glamour.
Juventus, who have now lost in their last five European Cup finals, missed the chance of doing the treble after their league and domestic cup triumphs and their coach Massimiliano Allegri admitted their performance dropped off against a better side.
“In the first half, we played beautifully. In the second half, we were too static. The truth is that Real Madrid have many important players. If somebody wins the Ballon d’Or and scores so many goals, obviously it’s a big advantage,” he told reporters at his post-match press conference.”
Real Madrid will face Europa League champions Manchester United in the 2017 Uefa Super Cup in Skopje, Macedonia, on 8 August.