Having already been awarded the Ballon d’Or this week, Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo was handed another present on Wednesday courtesy of Osasuna goalkeeper Andres Fernandez.
In the 21st minute of the second leg of their Copa del Rey tie, Ronaldo struck a free-kick that traveled straight at Fernandez, but, instead of making a routine stop, he tried to punch the ball clear and only succeeded in deflecting it down onto his ankle and into the back of the net.
It has been a hard week for Fernandez. Cameras caught the 27-year-old shaking his head in frustration for a mistake that will likely make the rounds on numerous blooper segments. On Sunday, Fernandez was sent off for a challenge against Real Betis.
The goal all-but seals Madrid’s place in the quarterfinals of Spain’s cup competition, with Los Merengues having taken a two-goal lead into the second leg of the tie in Pamplona. Indeed, the score-line might have already been more emphatic had Ronaldo not uncharacteristically wasted some clear chances in the first match last week.
Ronaldo ended Lionel Messi’s four-year dominance of the Ballon d’Or on Monday when he was named as the best player of 2013. Manager Carlo Ancelotti has challenged the Portuguese star to do even better in the year ahead.
Sports reporter, mainly focusing on my native sport of soccer, but also dabbling in some tennis and Formula One.