Feb. 24 (UPI) -- Chelsea's Olivier Giroud left his feet in the 68th minute and completed an acrobatic bicycle kick for a score to lead the Blues over Atletico in the first leg of their round of 16 Champions League matchup.
Giroud's second-half goal was the only score in the Blues' 1-0 triumph Tuesday at National Arena in Bucharest, Romania.
"I didn't know what to think about the goal, I was just trying to focus on hitting the ball well," Giroud told reporters.
The veteran striker snapped the deadlock about midway through the second half. Chelsea was on the attack in transition when left wing Marcos Alonso sent a feed into the box. Blues midfielder Mason Mount misplayed the pass, which allowed Atletico left back Mario Hermoso to get a touch on the ball.
But Hermoso's touch also was errant and went behind Atletico's last line of defense. Giroud had slipped into the area and tracked the ball while his back was to the goal.
He then jumped and used his left foot to send a bicycle kick shot into the left side of the net. The shot bounced by Atletico keeper Jan Oblak.
Referees initially ruled that Giroud was offside and took the goal off the scoreboard. The officials then consulted video assistant referee (VAR) and determined that Giroud was not offside.
"I love overhead kicks and I was pleased to see the ball hit the back of the net," Giroud said. "I had no idea about being offside or not."
Chelsea and Atletico battle in the second leg of their round of 16 matchup at 4 p.m. EST March 17 at Stamford Bridge in London. The Blues face Manchester United in England's Premier League at 11:30 a.m. EST Sunday at Stamford Bridge.
Atletico battles Villarreal in Spain's La Liga at 3 p.m. EST Sunday in Villarreal, Spain.