What makes Cristiano Ronaldo and Lionel Messi so great is that they can do things on a soccer pitch that no one else on the planet can do. Saturday was one of those special moments for Ronaldo in Real Madrid's 3-0 victory over Eibar.
The reigning Ballon d'Or winner lined up to take a free kick in the 21st minute after Luka Modric won a free kick about 31 yards out. Ronaldo intensely eyed his target like a sniper as goalkeeper Xabi Irureta organized his wall and nervously awaited his fate.
Ronaldo blasted a wicked free kick that cleared the wall and dipped so much that it bounced in front of Irureta. The sudden sinking action of the ball completely caught the keeper off guard as he couldn't even get a touch. Hit with such heavy top spin, the ball bounded into the net for a 1-0 Real Madrid lead.
You can't blame Irureta for being wrong-footed so badly. Ronaldo's free kick looked a lot like how a pitcher in baseball fools a hitter with a vicious split-finger fastball, which appears to "roll off the table" at the last second. Another parallel can loosely be drawn to basketball, but only because Stephen Curry recently did this to fellow NBA All-Star point guard Chris Paul.
Chicharito, who should do the right thing and move to Major League Soccer, and Jese added goals in the 31st and 83rd minutes, respectively, to secure all three points for Real Madrid.