Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone has described Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo as a goalscoring animal ahead of Wednesday’s Champions League Group D game at home to the Italians.

Ronaldo has scored 25 times against Atletico in 33 games and played a huge role in eliminating Simeone’s side from last season’s competition, scoring a hat-trick in a 3-0 win in the last-16 to overturn a 2-0 deficit from the first leg.

“Cristiano is an animal in front of goal, he can create danger any time he gets near the area,” Simeone told a news conference on Tuesday, praising the Portuguese who frequently tormented his side in a nine-year spell with Real Madrid.

Ronaldo has proved particularly deadly against Atletico in the Champions League, helping to beat them in two knockout ties and the 2014 and 2016 finals with Real as well as being responsible for their exit last season, his first with Juve.

“He is so difficult to keep under control because he has everything. He is superb in the air, he is good with both feet, he can get free of his marker easily and he has a deadly shot,” the Argentine coach added.

“We’ve suffered against him in the past and lost against him but we’ve also won against him.”

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