Cristiano Ronaldo struck a free-kick and Alvaro Morata turned home in the dying seconds to deny Sporting a remarkable Champions League upset, as Real Madrid battled back to grab a 2-1 win on Wednesday.
The reigning champions looked set for a shock defeat before Ronaldo stepped up and picked out the top-right corner directly from a set-piece 25 yards out, and Morata secured all three points with a 94th-minute header.
Ronaldo’s 350th appearance for Madrid came against the club where he made his debut, and it looked set to be a frustrating one when Bruno Cesar put Sporting ahead two minutes into the second half.
The Portuguese side had coach Jorge Jesus sent to the stands for his remonstrations at referee Paolo Tagliavento’s decision to book William Carvalho for a challenge on Luka Modric, and from there his team came under increased pressure.
Ronaldo rattled the post from inside the six-yard box with seven minutes remaining and he finally hit the net in the 89th minute, Sporting goalkeeper Rui Patricio getting a hand to the ball but failing to stop it flying in off the upright.