Real Madrid grabbed a major foothold in their Champions League semi-final tie as they narrowly beat Bayern Munich 2-1 at the Allianz Arena on Wednesday.
Bayern dominated much of the game, and had the better chances in the first half an hour that yielded them the lead. The visitors were in for a shock as Joshua Kimmich opened the scoring, finishing off a swift counter-attacking move to finish past Keylor Navas.
Just at the stroke of half-time though, Marcelo once again showed his attacking prowess as he was able to pull an equalizer from a long-range shot to send the two sides on equal terms into the break. Marco Asensio came on as a substitute, and ended the game as a super sub as he scored the winner in the 57th minute by a clever finish past Sven Ulreich.
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The result saw Real Madrid not just score two crucial away goals, but grab a major advantage heading into the second leg at the Bernabeu next week. The Hard Tackle now runs the rule over Zinedine Zidane’s men.
Keylor Navas: 7
Navas made an error in judgement, preparing himself for a cross instead of a shot from Joshua Kimmich, which caught him wrong footed as Bayern scored the opener. But he later made sure his team wouldn’t have to face more shocks as he blocked some good shots from the opposition.
Dani Carvajal: 6
Carvajal was playing in a good flow until he limped off midway through the second half. The Spaniard even played an important role in setting up the equalizer by Marcelo just before the half-time, with his hopeful header landing well for the Brazilian. His injury would be a major concern for Zidane ahead of the second leg.
Sergio Ramos: 7
Ramos was successful in doing his job as he delivered a good performance, making some important clearances and blocks.
Raphael Varane: 6
Varane produced a decent performance, playing carefully and consciously all throughout the game. The Frenchman is an able ally for Ramos at the heart of the Real Madrid defence, and will need to be on his guard in the second leg as well.
Defensively, Marcelo was not up to his standards. He gave a lot of space for the opposition to strike the first goal. On the opposite end of the pitch though, he scored the equaliser with a blistering long-range effort making him cope up for his mistakes at the back.
Poor game by the Spaniard, who hardly created an impact on the game and was subbed off at half-time.
Toni Kroos: 6
Kroos was successful in playing some fine balls in between the lines, which always kept Real Madrid in the hunt. He was able to penetrate the Bayern defence in the early moments of the game but later on, he had a tough time going forward.
Casemiro has seen better days in a Real Madrid shirt. The Brazilian was often a lone man trying to break up the Bayern attacks in the middle, which hardly did him any favours as he struggled to cope up with the hosts’ onslaught.
Luka Modric: 5.5
Modric’s performance on the night was a mixed bag. While the Croat made his presence felt, his passing was a bit off on the night, which meant Bayern largely dominated the game.
Lucas Vasquez: 6
Vazquez was not really in his elements on Wednesday, but his liveliness in the final third always kept Real Madrid in the game. Ultimately, he set up the assist for Marco Asensio, and even showed his versatility by filling in at right-back after Carvajal’s substitution.
Cristiano Ronaldo: 4
Cristiano Ronaldo was anyone but the player who had scored in every game in the competition up until Wednesday. In all fairness though, as has been observed over the course of the season, playing as the lone striker left him isolated, and the player frustrated.
Marco Asensio: 8
The star of the night. Scored a brilliant goal and elevated the level of Real Madrid’s plays in the final third after he made his entry at half-time. Has made a big case to start in the second leg next week.