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Real Madrid 3-1 Paris (agg: 3-2): Benzema hat-trick earns comeback win

Karim Benzema scored a second-half hat-trick as the Spanish side came from two down to snatch a quarter-final spot from Paris Saint-Germain's grasp.

Watch all the drama from an incredible night at Estadio Santiago Bernabéu as a Karim Benzema hat-trick gave Real Madrid what had seemed an unlikely passage to the last eight.
Highlights: Real Madrid 3-1 Paris

Karim Benzema hit a hat-trick in the space of 18 second-half minutes as Real Madrid came from 2-0 down on aggregate to stun Paris and seal a place in the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals.

Key moments

34' Mbappé effort ruled out for offside
39' Mbappé scores second of the tie
54' Sublime Mbappé finish... but offside
61' Opportunistic Benzema pulls one back
76' Benzema levels tie from Modrić assist
78' Benzema hat-trick completes turnaround

Match in brief: Benzema leads from the front

Kylian Mbappé's jet-heels were propelling Paris on a direct course to the last eight for the first hour in Madrid. The 23-year-old doubled the French side's advantage with his second of the tie and was looking unplayable, with two more efforts chalked off for offside.

Another goal appeared only a matter of time and it duly came – at the other end. Gianluigi Donnarumma dallied fatally and the opportunistic Benzema blocked, the ball spinning for Vinícius Júnior, who duly returned it to his senior partner for a simple finish.

Fifteen minutes later, thanks to the abolition of away goals rule, the tie was level as Benzema collected Luka Modrić's pass and fired in. If Paris had been rocking before they were all at sea now and Benzema completed the turnaround straight from the kick-off after another Vinícius Júnior assist.

PlayStation® Player of the Match: Karim Benzema (Real Madrid)

Player of the Match: Karim Benzema
Player of the Match: Karim Benzema

"A clinical display, and a special Champions League hat-trick."
UEFA Technical Observer panel

As it happened: Real Madrid 3-1 Paris

Graham Hunter, Real Madrid reporter

Age moves on but true class never withers. This tie swivelled, in the most dramatic way, thanks to the 35-year-old Modrić and 34-year-old Benzema, who came to the rescue when his team needed him most. Time and again it looked like Paris's superior passing, athleticism and the brilliance of Mbappé might be enough. But, thanks to two old stagers, the new men, the coming force, were upstaged.

Ian Holyman, Paris reporter

Kyliann Mbappé soaks up the acclaim
Kyliann Mbappé soaks up the acclaimGetty Images

Paris will be wondering what happened. The first 45 minutes were almost certainly the best they have played this season, with Lionel Messi, Neymar and Mbappé functioning fluidly. They still looked comfortable enough until Donnarumma's error, and their confidence frittered away. Benzema's display played a role, but Paris will be aware they contributed greatly to their own downfall.

Reaction

Mauricio Pochettino, Paris coach: "The[ir] first goal completely changed the game. For an hour, we were better than Real Madrid. The atmosphere changed in the stadium. We were the better side, but we lost the tie in ten minutes."

Carlo Ancelotti, Madrid coach: "[Benzema's] first goal was key. It changed the dynamic of the game, of the fans. After that, we controlled the game, we pressed."

Marquinhos, Paris captain: "It's tough to explain. Over the two games, we deserved better – but we paid dearly for our mistakes."

Karim Benzema, Madrid forward: "It was a very difficult game but we pushed till the end and deserve the win."

Michael Owen, BT Sport

"I just didn't see that coming. Benzema – what a player."

Key stats

  • Real Madrid are through to the European Cup quarter-finals for a record 37th time.
  • Benzema is the first player to score in 18 successive calendar years in the UEFA Champions League (2005–2022).
  • At 34 years and 80 days, Benzema is the oldest player to score a Champions League hat-trick.
  • Mbappé has scored 14 goals in his last 14 Champions League appearances.

Fantasy star performers

Karim Benzema – 17
Kylian Mbappé – 6
Luka Modrić – 6

Highlights: Paris 1-0 Real Madrid
Highlights: Paris 1-0 Real Madrid

Line-ups

Real Madrid: Courtois; Carvajal (Vázquez 66), Éder Militão, Alaba, Nacho; Modrić, Kroos (Camavinga 57), Valverde; Asensio (Rodrygo 57), Benzema, Vinícius Júnior

Paris: Donnarumma; Hakimi (Draxler 88), Marquinhos, Kimpembe, Nuno Mendes; Danilo (Di María 81), Verratti, Paredes (Gueye 71); Neymar, Messi, Mbappé