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Mourinho on course for date with destiny

updated 6:30 PM EDT, Wed April 3, 2013
Cristiano Ronaldo gave Real a ninth minute lead against Galatasaray with a delightful finish to take his tally to nine for the competition and 45 for the season. Cristiano Ronaldo gave Real a ninth minute lead against Galatasaray with a delightful finish to take his tally to nine for the competition and 45 for the season.
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STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Real Madrid cruises to 3-0 win over Galatasaray
  • Cristiano Ronaldo on target for Spanish side in first leg victory
  • Malaga and Dortmund finish goalless in opening game
  • German side wasted a number of glorious chances

(CNN) -- Perhaps it is fate -- or is it destiny?

Jose Mourinho has been writing his own scripts for years, but the latest episode in the journey of the "Special One" could be something of a blockbuster.

Take a moment and picture the scene.

The Wembley arch, the trophy he considers his own, the city in which it so painfully eluded him and perhaps most importantly, the team which still mocks him by calling him 'the translator'.

Wembley -- Champions League final -- London -- Real Madrid versus Barcelona. It's a cast of which Steven Spielberg would be proud.

It has all the makings of a classic, but can the man who has already won Europe's greatest prize with Porto and Inter Milan repeat the feat?

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With his silver hair glistening beneath the floodlights, his hands in his pockets and that film star stare, Mourinho watched on as his Real Madrid side dismissed Turkish side Galatasaray 3-0 in the first leg of its Champions League quarterfinal Wednesday.

Read: Mourinho rues Real Madrid's lack of goals

Only a miracle in Istanbul, something of Liverpool proportions, will now see Galatasaray prevent Mourinho in his quest to become the first man to win Europe's greatest prize with three different clubs.

And how sweet the triumph should the Portuguese coach end his time at the Bernabeu by delivering the Holy Grail known as "La Decima".

Yes, the tenth European Cup is the one Real so badly craves and for Mourinho, it would provide the perfect parting gift at the end of a season where he is widely expected to take his leave.

Embroiled in a spat with the Spanish press, rumors of a split in the squad and his team 13 points off arch rival Barcelona at the top of La Liga, this has been a turbulent year for Mourinho.

But this is a man who thrives under pressure, the man who enjoys employing the siege mentality, which he so famously instilled in his Chelsea side.

Read: Real held in Champions League blockbuster

That he never managed to win the Champions League while in west London will remain a blot on his otherwise flawless copy book.

But with Mourinho expected to leave Real in the summer and Chelsea set to appoint a new manager at the end of the season, there are questions as to whether his return to London may extend beyond the 2013 Champions League final.

Another Champions League triumph would make him almost irresistible -- even to Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich.

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Not since 2002 has Real ruled Europe and while Barcelona and Bayern Munich remains its biggest rivals, the Mourinho factor can not be easily discounted.

What is for certain is that there will be more testing nights ahead for this Real team with a place in the semifinals all but assured.

Read: Galatasaray agree Drogba deal

Just nine minutes had elapsed when Mesut Ozil's sumptuous through ball released Cristiano Ronaldo, who calmly fired home his ninth goal of the competition and 45th of the season.

That strike might have dented the confidence of some teams, but Galatasaray refused to bow and instead threatened to respond almost immediately.

Didier Drogba, the man who inspired Chelsea to Champions League success last season, curled just wide from the edge of the penalty area as the Turkish side threatened an equalizer.

Uninhibited by the surroundings of the Santiago Bernabeu and the presence of Ronaldo, Galatasaray appeared determined to take the game to its host.

But while its intention was honorable, the naivety was plain for all to see as Real used its pace and power to counter at every opportunity.

Read: Should Ronaldo return to Man United?

Karim Benzema plundered a second on 29 minutes after the visiting defense had failed to clear Michael Essien's right-wing cross.

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Substitute Gonzalo Higuain added a third after coming on as substitute to all but seal his side's place in the last four with 17 minutes remaining.

"If we score one more goal, they have to score five," Mourinho told Sky Sports following the victory.

"The football I saw was very good, I saw a lot of incredible things - but Istanbul is a difficult place to play and they have players with a lot of experience, with great character and personality.

"They will fight hard against us, but we will take it very seriously, its the only way to get through."

Read: Schmeichel tips Dortmund for Champions League glory

In the night's other game, Malaga escaped with a goalless draw at La Rosaleda after holding Borussia Dortmund.

The Spanish club, which is making its debut in the Champions League, extended its unbeaten home record in European competition to 14 matches.

But it could have been quite different had the Germans not wasted a whole host of chances with Mario Gotze and Robert Lewandowski both failing to convert opportunities.

And it was almost punished when Isco's rasping drive forced Dortmund keeper Roman Weidenfeller into an impressive stop.

"It's a positive result because if we score there it will make it difficult for them," Malaga winger Joaquin told Canal Plus.

"We have the same chance as they do of going through and we'll try to repeat what we did tonight, playing a serious game and trying to grab the odd goal," he added.

"We came up against what we were expecting, which was a great team that plays football very well but we also had our chances. They made us suffer but we were expecting that."

Dortmund coach Jurgen Klopp insists he is more than happy with his side's position going into next week's second leg.

He told reporters: "I can live with this 0-0. We did everything well from the first kick to the final whistle but it's a higher level.

"We know what we have to do in the return match."

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