Cristiano Ronaldo leads Real to record-equalling win


Cristiano Ronaldo struck four times to set a record for goals scored in the Champions League group stage as Real Madrid also equalled the record victory in the competition by beating Malmo 8-0.

Karim Benzema scored his first hat-trick for five years, while Mateo Kovacic added his first goal for the Spanish giants. The scoreline equalled Liverpool’s 8-0 thrashing of Besiktas in November 2007.

Ronaldo’s tally of 11 goals in the group stages surpasses the previous record of nine held by himself in 2013-14 and Luiz Adriano for Shakh­tar Donetsk last season.

With top spot in Group A assured, Rafael Benítez, the Real manager, rested some of his stars, including Gareth Bale, but Madrid were still in a different league to a Malmo side who ended their domestic season more than five weeks ago. Benzema scored his first hat-trick since another 8-0 Real win against Levante in December 2010 to take his tally to five in his past two games.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Lucas set each other up for goals as Paris St‑Germain defeated Shakhtar

Donetsk 2-0 in their final group game. With Madrid having already secured first place and PSG guaranteed second spot, there was nothing at stake for home fans at Parc des Princes. Lucas took his chance well almost an hour in with a clean strike into the left corner.

Lucas then headed a long ball down into Ibrahimovic’s path, and he finished with an equally crisp shot near the end. Shakhtar, who finished third to qualify for the ­Europa League, had chances but their midfielder Alex Teixeira was unusually wasteful in front of goal.

Luciano Vietto scored one goal after setting up the opener to lead a 2-1 win for Atlético Madrid at Benfica that enabled the visitors to leap­frog their Portuguese hosts and win their group.

Playing at the stadium where they lost the 2014 final, ­Diego Simeone’s side avenged a 2-1 defeat against Benfica from earlier this season and topped Group C by three points. Vietto passed for Saul ­Niguez to convert Atlético’s aggressive start into a goal after half an hour, before he added a goal of his own early in the second half. Kostas Mitroglou halved the difference for Benfica in the 75th.