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Cristiano Ronaldo delighted as Real Madrid's CWC win ends 'dream year'

Cristiano Ronaldo hailed a "perfect year" after his hat trick helped Real Madrid come from behind to beat Kashima Antlers in the Club World Cup final in Yokohama.

Madrid won 4-2 after extra time, with their Japanese opponents having led 2-1 at one stage thanks to midfielder Gaku Shibasaki's brace.

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But Ronaldo equalised from the penalty spot and completed his treble in extra time as Zinedine Zidane's side turned the match around.

And the 31-year-old, who won a fourth Ballon d'Or following a year that saw him lift both the Champions League and European Championship trophies, told TV Espana: "It has been an impressive year, a dream year.

"I did not expect to win all this. Three goals in a final, another trophy with Real Madrid -- I am very happy."

Ronaldo added that he would not have achieved so much success without the help of his Bernabeu colleagues.

"There is always more expected of Cristiano, and I always try to do it," he said.

"I must thank all my teammates, as without them I would not have won the personal trophies I have won."

Ronaldo said Madrid had been surprised by outsiders Kashima, adding: "We did not expect them to play so well. But finals are like this -- you must suffer.

"We wanted this trophy a lot, and have ended the year in the best way. We are very happy."

Dermot Corrigan is a Madrid-based football writer who covers La Liga and the Spain national team for ESPN FC. Follow him on Twitter @dermotmcorrigan

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