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Ronaldo winner against Basle boosts Liverpool's cause

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Cristiano Ronaldo waves the fans after Real Madrid's 1-0 Champions League win over FC Basel at the St. Jakob Stadium. Photo: Angel Martinez/Real Madrid via Getty Images

Cristiano Ronaldo waves the fans after Real Madrid's 1-0 Champions League win over FC Basel at the St. Jakob Stadium. Photo: Angel Martinez/Real Madrid via Getty Images

Real Madrid via Getty Images

Cristiano Ronaldo waves the fans after Real Madrid's 1-0 Champions League win over FC Basel at the St. Jakob Stadium. Photo: Angel Martinez/Real Madrid via Getty Images

After a week of being overshadowed by Lionel Messi's goalscoring feats, Cristiano Ronaldo grabbed some of the limelight back last night - and helped Liverpool into the bargain.

Ronaldo got Real Madrid's winner in the 1-0 victory in Basel, his 71st Champions League goal, three behind Messi's new record, turning in Karim Benzema's cross from the left in the 35th minute. It meant Liverpool closed the gap on the Swiss side before they meet at Anfield on December 9.

Atletico Madrid, last season's beaten finalists, clinched their place in the last 16 with a 4-0 win over Olympiakos at the Vicente Calderon, Mario Mandzukic getting a hat-trick.

Juventus, wearing an all-green kit, took a big step towards qualification, with a hard-fought 2-0 win in Malmo. Spain striker Fernando Llorente got their first goal just after the break, coolly latching onto a through ball to go past keeper Robin Olsen and score. Carlos Tevez's breakaway goal rounded things off with two minutes to go.

Irish Independent