Diego Maradona described Cristiano Ronaldo as “a wizard” following his hat-trick for Juventus against Atletico Madrid on Tuesday.
Trailing 2-0 from the first leg of the Champions League last-16 tie, Juve powered into the quarter-finals with a 3-0 victory at the Allianz Stadium.
Ronaldo scored all three goals, taking his career tally of Champions League hat-tricks to eight, level with Barcelona star Lionel Messi.
The 34-year-old, who joined Juve in a €112million deal from Real Madrid last year, reportedly predicted to friends that he would net three times to send his side through.
His latest feat left even Argentina great Maradona amazed.
“There are players who have been touched by a magic wand,” he said, as quoted by Marca.
“The truth is we Argentines are proud that Messi is Argentinian and that he didn’t go off with the Spanish [at international level].
“The other one is an animal. Ronaldo is pure power, and now he’s also a wizard. He said he’d score three goals and he scored three goals.”