Lionel Messi has admitted Cristiano Ronaldo’s “magical” Champions League hat-trick was “impressive”.
Superstar Ronaldo bagged a brilliant treble to almost single handedly drag Juventus past Atletico Madrid in the Champions League last-16.
Ronaldo’s goals helped his side overcome a two-goal deficit from the first-leg on Tuesday night.
Ronaldo’s Balon d’Or rival Messi watched the magical performance before having his own quality-filled European night to assist Barcelona past Lyon on Wednesday.
Not to be outdone, Messi bagged a brace of his own at the Nou Camp.
The Argentine cheekily lifted a Panenka penalty in to get Barca on their way to a 5-1 on the night win and a place in the quarter-finals.
Messi also netted the third goal and told Mundo Deportivo after the victory: “The thing about Cristiano and Juventus yesterday was impressive, it was a big surprise, Juventus went over Atletico, I hoped they would have more strength.
“Juventus has a lot of potential and Cristiano had a magical night with his three goals.”
Philippe Coutinho, Gerard Pique and Ousmane Dembele also got on the score sheet to put Barca in Friday’s draw – where they could face Ronaldo’s Juventus.
Premier League sides Liverpool , Manchester United and Manchester City along with Porto and Ajax are also potential opponents.
Diego Maradona was also impressed by Ronaldo’s performance against Atleti.
Maradona said: “There are players who have been touched by a magic wand. We Argentines are proud that Lionel Messi is Argentinian.
“The other one is an animal. Ronaldo is pure power, and now he’s also a sorcerer. He said he’d score three goals and he scored three goals.”