Ronaldo hat-trick keeps Real`s title hopes alive

Madrid: Cristiano Ronaldo fired a hat-trick to keep Real Madrid`s title challenge alive in a 4-1 comeback victory at Real Mallorca.

With no margin for error after leaders Barcelona crushed Tenerife 4-1 on Tuesday to open up a four-point gap at the top of La Liga, Real were rocked when Mallorca`s Aritz Aduriz scored after 16 minutes.

Ronaldo had saved Real with a last-minute winner at home to Osasuna at the weekend, and he took responsibility to lead the fightback by lobbing an impressive equaliser in the 26th minute.

Just after the re-start he stole in to put Real ahead and then he streaked in off the left flank to effectively seal the win in the 72nd minute. Gonzalo Higuain wrapped up the scoring with a superb lob.

Manuel Pellegrini`s side moved to 92 points, one behind Barca with two matches left to play, after having triumphed in what was considered their toughest game of the title run in.

Mallorca slipped out of Spain`s last Champions League qualification place down to fifth on 59 points, with Sevilla having earlier hammered Racing Santander 5-1 to climb on to 60.

Bureau Report