MADRID, March 11- A sensational Champions League night at the Bernabeu ended with Real Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo refusing to speak to the press after the game and captain Iker Casillas admitting that his side had “hit rock bottom.”
Schalke arrived in the Spanish capital with few pundits giving them any chance of progressing, however Roberto Di Matteo’s side pushed the reigning European champions all the way — eventually losing the tie 5-4 on aggregate despite winning the second leg 4-3.
The Germans twice capitalised on Madrid mistakes to take the lead during the opening stages, only for Blancos talisman Ronaldo to twice equalise with excellent headers.
Even after Karim Benzema put Madrid 3-2 ahead on the night soon after half time, the Bundesliga outfit refused to give up, and goals from teenager Leroy Sane and ex-Madrid striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar put their side back within one more of the last eight.
Casillas told reporters after the game that things looked bad now, but at least Madrid would be in the draw for the quarterfinals.
“It is true that we have hit rock bottom in a most resounding way, but the positive is that Friday next week we are in the draw and we will forget what has happened these 10 days,” the Spain international said. “Because we have lived through 10 dramatic days.”
Casillas did at least speak with reporters after the game, unlike double goal-scorer Ronaldo, who passed quickly through the Bernabeu mixed zone, just leaving behind the message that he would not speak to the media until the end of the season.
It was not immediately clear why the Portuguese was taking this stance, although his performances had been harshly criticised in the local and global press after Saturday’s 1-0 defeat at Athletic Bilbao.
-By ESPN Soccernet