Girona's Castellanos makes history with quadruple against Madrid

Girona's Castellanos makes history with quadruple against Madrid

April 25, 2023 at 9:09 PM
Girona forward Taty Castellanos acknowledges the crowd as he leaves the pitch after scoring four goals against Real Madrid
Girona forward Taty Castellanos acknowledges the crowd as he leaves the pitch after scoring four goals against Real Madrid. Photo: LLUIS GENE / AFP
Source: AFP

Girona striker Taty Castellanos became the first player to score four goals in one game against Real Madrid in La Liga since 1947 in his side's 4-2 triumph on Tuesday.

The forward put on a lethal display of finishing to stun the champions and virtually extinguish any remaining hopes they had of defending their title against rivals Barcelona.

Castellanos, on loan from MLS club New York City FC, hit two goals in both halves to secure Girona an impressive victory over Carlo Ancelotti's side.

Both Girona and New York City are sister clubs of Manchester City, who face Real Madrid in the Champions League semi-finals in May.

The last player to hit four against Madrid in La Liga was Real Oviedo's Esteban Echavarria, in 1947 -- although current Barcelona striker Robert Lewandowski managed the feat in the Champions League in 2013 with Borussia Dortmund.

Castellanos broke the deadlock with a poacher's header and drilled the second through Madrid goalkeeper Andriy Lunin's legs.

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The forward gave Madrid defender Eder Militao nightmares with his movement.

He pounced again after just 36 seconds in the second half to complete his hat-trick, and easily escaped Militao to nod in the fourth from close range.

Castellanos departed to a standing ovation when he was replaced in the 72nd minute.

"It was a dream night, we had a great game against one of the best teams in the world, it was a dream night," Castellanos said.

"I never imagined this, (I'm) enjoying it with our fans, with the people who have sent me support -- my family, people in Argentina, they are always supporting me and that's fundamental."

Golden Boot

The Argentine striker won the MLS Golden Boot in 2021 with 19 goals in 32 matches, but has not been capped by his country.

A year ago Castellanos hit four goals for New York City against Real Salt Lake, but said his accomplishment against Madrid was on a different level.

"Obviously they are different days, it was a dream to score against Madrid and to score four -- you can't even imagine it," he said.

"I'm very happy for everything, for the fans, for the lads."

Castellanos now has 11 goals in La Liga this season in 29 appearances.

The forward made headlines in Spain for a miss when through on goal during Girona's 0-0 draw at Camp Nou earlier in April, after which he cried in the dressing room.

The forward shut down his social media accounts in the aftermath amid criticism from some fans online.

Girona coach Michel said he was happy for Castellanos after his stellar display against Madrid.

"Taty was very good apart from the goals when it came to his work," said Michel.

"I'm happy for him because after his game against Barca, and his miss, he shut his social media down.

"I told him to be calm, that it was his first season in Europe."

Girona players celebrated wildly on the pitch after the game, with Castellanos beaming from ear to ear, his misfortune against Barcelona long forgotten.

The Catalans can extend their 11-point advantage on Madrid to 14 if they win at Rayo Vallecano on Wednesday.

AFP photo