Real Madrid will wheel out the usual respectful spiel about all possible opponents in the Champions League semifinals being dangerous but Juventus were undoubtedly the draw the European champions wanted.
That is not to say Emilio Butragueno, the club's director of institutional relations, and company are wrong. Juventus are Italian champions, runaway Serie A leaders and possess a squad packed full of quality, with experience and youthful exuberance in good measure. A tough tie lies in wait but Madrid...
MADRID -- Real Madrid fans spilled out of the Bernabeu on Wednesday proclaiming their latest hero. Before the match they'd been singing about Jose Mourinho -- yes, really -- Raul and Cristiano Ronaldo. After it, they howled "Chich-a-rito! Chich-a-rito!"
The Mexican had scored an 88th-minute winner, the difference between the Madrid giants over two epic struggles in which a glamorous white attacking machine went again and again into the teeth of a red defensive monster, who had spat them out undefeated...
When Atletico Madrid's bus left the Santiago Bernabeu late Wednesday night, pulling out onto Calle Rafael Salgado, Diego Simeone was not on board. He departed without the players whom he had said he was proud of. For the first time since he became their manager in 2011, they will finish the season empty-handed. Knocked out of the trophy they wanted most, denied to them in the very last minute of the very last game last season, and the one that represented their only chance of success this season.
It's been a while since the world has witnessed the impact an important Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez Champions League goal can have in his homeland of Mexico.
After his late winner for Real Madrid against Atletico Madrid in the Estadio Bernabeu on Wednesday to send los Blancos through to the semifinals of the Champions League, a welcome reminder came with it.
"One day you're a sub who is the brunt of jokes," read one meme published just after the match. "The next day you're the idol of Real Madrid."
MADRID, Spain -- There have been a lot of tears in the career of Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez, so if he turned his head away from the cameras and buried his face in the shoulder of teammate Keylor Navas during the final, ultra-tense moments of the match in which he became Real Madrid's unexpected Champions League hero, he can be forgiven.
Real Madrid finally broke the Atletico curse (admittedly one of seven games rather than 14 years) in the Bernabeu on Wednesday evening, and once again got the better of Diego Simeone's side when it really mattered after last year's final in Lisbon.
All the Super Cups in the kingdom won't be able to put Atletico Madrid back together again after Real ended the Rojiblancos' Champions League campaign, leaving them to scrap for third in La Liga. Meanwhile Carlo Ancelotti's side can continue to dream of...