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UCL – Madrid steal win at the Allianz Arena, on course for Kiev
- Updated: April 26, 2018
Real Madrid FC ran out winners with a 2:1 victory over Bayern Munich at the Allianz Arena. They now go back home with a 2 away-goal advantage, as they prepare for the visit of the Bavarian giants to the Bernabeu in what could best be described as a do-or-die encounter.
Real Madrid have been on a successful course for their third consecutive UCL win thus far, and have had to go by supposed favorites for the title with relative ease, although Juventus made them work thoroughly for progression in the previous round.
Real struggled defensively but the likes of Marcelo and Marco Asensio who nobody would have bet on to hit the back of the net provided the goods in goals that saw Madrid emerge victoriously from the Allianz Arena.
The Bundesliga champions raced into the lead through a counter-attack and precise defense-splitting pass from James Rodriguez to wonder boy Joshua Kimmich who shot past a suspect Keylor Navas from the near post in the 27th minute.
It can be recalled that Florentino Perez expressed confidence in Keylor Navas early this week. The shot-stopper came to the rescue though with a fine save from a Frank Ribery effort after Real Madrid took the lead in the game.
The Jupp Heynckes led side were also wasteful in front of goal throughout the game. This enabled Madrid to still have that lifeline before they drew level with a smashing canon shot from Marcelo in the 43rd minute that gave the goalie no chance of a save. The best time to equalize for Real Madrid and the worst possible time to concede for Bayern Munich.
The script that has played excellently to Real Madrid’s advantage in these knock out phases came to life as a defensive blunder from Rafinha gifted the ball to Lucas Vazquez whose partnership with Marco Asensio paid off. He sent a through pass to the latter which enabled him to score the 2nd and subsequently the winning goal for Real Madrid in the 56th minute.
Meanwhile, Real Madrid talisman Cristiano Ronaldo had a relatively quiet game, although he scored a goal that was ruled out for handball, eventually ending his run of finding the back of the net in every game of the 2017/18 UEFA Champions League. Bayern must now score at least 2 goals whilst ending up on the winning side at Bernabeu next Tuesday to progress to the finals and stop Madrid from reaching their fourth final in five years.
The proceedings of the game saw Bayern earn the lion share of the possession as Los Blancos had just 39.7% the entire game. This is further proof that the Santiago Bernabeu outfit is mastering the art of progressing through the knockout stages, as they’ve shown a brilliant ability to grind out results when necessary.
The defensive frailties that were seen in their 3:1 defeat to Juventus in the last round came to the fore as they could have gone down further in the game, albeit for Bayern’s profligacy in front of goal. This is one area Zinedine Zidane will have to work on, ahead of the second leg encounter.
The final whistle of the game saw some enraged home fans rush into the pitch to confront the Bayern players. Real Madrid have now won six consecutive UCL games against Bayern Munich, their joint longest winning run against an opponent in the competition having also done same against Ajax between 2010 and 2012.
- The past 3 games in which Bayern have scored first and eventually lost have been against Real Madrid. This loss was preceded by two losses in last season’s quarter-final stage.
- Kimmich has been the player involved in the most goals for Bayern Munich in the 2017/18 UCL. Three goals and three assists.
- Marco Asensio’s past 3 UCL goals have been as a sub, all in knockout matches, two against the same Bayern last season, and one against Juventus in the final.
- Real Madrid became the first club to reach 150 wins in the UEFA Champions League with victory at the Allianz Arena.
- The goal by Kimmich was the 100th scored under the tutelage of Jupp Heynckes in the UEFA Champions League. 78 for Bayern, and 22 for Real Madrid.