Manchester City and Atletico Madrid took big steps towards the Champions League quarter finals on a thrilling and controversial night of football.
City won 3-2 at Schalke, despite going behind to two penalties and having Nicolas Otamendi sent off, while Atletico beat Juventus 2-0 after having a goal and a penalty chalked off by VAR.
Away from the main action, there were several talking points which may have slipped under your radar. Don’t fear, Sportsmail is here to catch you up on the things you missed…
Ronaldo dedicates his boots to his child…
Cristiano Ronaldo wore special embroidered boots for Juventus’ clash with Atletico at the Wanda Metropolitano.
Along with his ‘CR7’ nickname, Ronaldo had the name of his fourth and youngest child, Alana Martina, written down the outside.
Alana was born to Ronaldo and his girlfriend, Georgina Rodriguez, on November 12, 2017, and is younger sister to Cristiano junior and twins Mateo and Eva.
Cristiano Ronaldo wore special embroidered boots for Juventus’ clash with Atletico
…but another youngster wants his attention
Being a mascot for a Champions League match is a fantastic experience for any young football fan. Being paired with one of the greatest players ever makes that dream even better.
Television cameras captured the young boy paired with Cristiano Ronaldo looking up at the star in nothing short of enthralment.
He clung to the Portuguese forward’s arm as if afraid he might vanish – enough to make Ronaldo glance down in what appeared to be mild bemusement.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s mascot seemed unable to believe his luck at being paired with the star
The youngster gazed up in wonder at Ronaldo as he clung hard to the player’s forearm
Ronaldo glanced down at his adoring fan with what appeared to be mild bemusement
Schalke’s literal tunnel
At Manchester City, they have the Tunnel Club, where well-off supporters can pay a premium to watch the players through glass as they munch on prawn sandwiches.
City’s opponents on Wednesday, Schalke, have gone for a very different approach, with the walls designed to look like an actual tunnel through rock.
This is in honour of the North Rhine-Westphalia area in which the club is situated, which has numerous coalmines. Schalke themselves are nicknamed Die Knappen (The Miners).
The tunnel at Schalke’s stadium is designed to look like an actual tunnel in a coal mine
Spain boss in the stands
Luis Enrique, manager of the Spanish national team, was in the stands of the Wanda Metropolitano.
The former Barcelona coach will be planning his squad for the European Championship qualifiers, which begin next month.
Spain start their attempts to reach the 2020 finals with a game against Norway at Valencia’s Mestalla.
Luis Enrique, manager of Spain, was in the stands of the Wanda Metropolitano on Wednesday
Courtois canned by Atletico fans
Thibaut Courtois made his name in three seasons with Atletico Madrid, helping them win La Liga, the Europa League and reach the Champions League final. Such was his contribution, the Belgian stopper has a plaque dedicated to him outside the Wanda Metropolitano, alongside other notable former players.
Those fond memories, however, have been extinguished by Courtois joining city rivals Real last summer – and the fans are not impressed.
They demonstrated their displeasure by covering his plaque in beer glasses, bottles and cans, with only Courtois’ name, very pointedly, left visible.
Thibaut Courtois’ plaque outside the Wanda Metropolitano has been trashed by Atletico fans
Diego Costa being Diego Costa
Fans of gamesmanship and rough-housing will be glad to hear that Diego Costa remains as prime a purveyor of the dark arts at Atletico Madrid as he was at Chelsea.
Within 30 seconds he was in the referee’s face to complain about a decision. After eight minutes he had already picked up a booking that rules him out of the second leg.
Costa was also at the centre of the main first half controversy when he was tripped by Mattia De Sciglio outside the area however the referee awarded a penalty – only to rescind it via VAR.
Some fans on Twitter expressed their admiration for Costa’s unashamed villainy – while others gloated after he missed a one-on-one sitter early in the second half.
Diego Costa was ruled out of the second leg after being booked after just eight minutes
Now that’s what I call a lager top
The winners of the Champions League will not be decided until May – but really, on Wednesday night, the true champion was crowned.
A Schalke fan was captured on television balancing a near-full pint perfectly on his head as he walked through the stands, to the delight of fellow supporters.
Maybe he made use of some surreptitious glue or blu-tac, but we like to think that this fan was the most level headed man in Gelsenkirchen on Wednesday,
A Schalke fan was captured on television balancing a near-full pint perfectly on his head
The drink was steady he walked through the stands, to the delight of fellow supporters
One impressed fan even asked for a picture of the level headed supporter in Gelsenkirchen
Ballsy celebration from Simeone
Atletico manager Diego Simeone is a man’s man, as tough on the touchline as he was on the pitch with testosterone coursing through his veins.
That testosterone was very much on show as he celebrated Atletico’s first goal, scored by centre back Jose Gimenez.
Simeone turned to the crowd, grabbed his crotch, thrusted and roared in delight. Because of course he did.
Atletico manager Diego Simeone celebrated the opening goal in enthusiastic style
Ronaldo’s message to the Atletico fans
This was Ronaldo’s first game back in Madrid since leaving Real for Juventus in a £100million transfer last summer.
Predictably, he was given a hostile reception by the home crowd – but appeared to retaliate with a reminder of his success.
The Metropolitano Stadium teased Ronaldo with ‘pay your taxes’ chants. He responded by showing five fingers – one for every Champions League he has won, two against Atletico.
Ronaldo was captured holding up five fingers as he was booed by the Atletico supporters