Real Madrid looked unstoppable thanks to Karim Benzema in the Champions League Quarterfinals

Real Madrid looked unstoppable thanks to Karim Benzema in the Champions League Quarterfinals

USA News

Real Madrid is used to playing meaningful international games in the spring. One of the world’s true powerhouses, the Spain-based club is almost unmatched in prowess. They’re also routinely stacked with some of the world’s finest stars.

Some of the brighter recent names to have worn the Spanish royal crown on their uniform: Cristiano Ronaldo. Zinedine Zidane. Sergio Ramos. Gareth Bale. Iker Casillas.

After Real Madrid’s (+277 underdogs coming in) crushing 3-1 blowout of Chelsea in the first leg of the Champions League quarterfinals, one man is quickly making a case to be another modern legend.

The Frenchman, Karim Benzema. Why may you ask?

I don’t know; how about yet another unstoppable hat trick for one of the world’s premier strikers? Okay, fine. What about how this hat trick against Chelsea was his second consecutive Champions League game with three goals?

Does that suffice as evidence for Benzema’s case? I think it does.

Let’s run down a couple of the back-netters for this oh-so-special No. 9.

After Benzema got Real on the board in the 24th minute with a perfect header, he followed that up with another perfect header. Three minutes later.

It might seem like an easy tap-in (with your head, mind you), but it takes unique instincts to 1. Be in an ideal position for the pass, and 2. To finish it past the goalkeeper. Not many can manage that twice in a matter of minutes, but Benzema clearly can.

As the first half wound down and Chelsea looked for hope to regroup, Benzema fittingly drove the final dagger in — at the expense of goalkeeper Édouard Mendy.

Rough. If it’s any consolation, Mendy, PSG’s Donnarumma shares a club with you in gifting Benzema hat tricks in the Champions League.

In case it wasn’t clear, Benzema is on an all-time tear. With six goals in his last two Champions League games, he is now fourth all-time with four hat tricks in the tournament.

It gets even better overall: He’s now but three Champions League goals (82) behind Bayern Munich’s Robert Lewandowski (85).

If Benzema keeps up his pace, he may well tie Lewandowski by the time Real Madrid (likely) plays in the Semifinals. And if that happens, we might start discussing one of the astounding Champions League performances in history. That is, if we aren’t already.

Real Madrid is known for having stellar talent in the clutch. Benzema’s hot streak is unprecedented for even one of the most prestigious soccer organizations in the world.

For the sake of our watching eyes — may it never end.

Read More