Preview - Real Madrid vs Liverpool 27 May 18

Started by Harry85, May 24, 2018, 09:16 PM

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Harry85

Champions League Final
Real Madrid vs. Liverpool
Sunday, May 27th , 2018
03:45 am (GMT+8 Timing)
Stadium: NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium

Real Madrid: 
Last five matches form: D D L W D
CL Average goals per match: 2.50
CL Average goals against per match: 1.25
CL Top Scorer: Cristiano Ronaldo (15)

Liverpool:
Last five matches form: W D L L W
CL Average goals per match: 3.33
CL Average goals against per match: 1.08
CL Top Scorer: Mohamed Salah and Roberto Firmino (10)
This weekend sees the 2017/18 Champions League reach its final destination as Kiev plays host to the biggest game in club football. And what a match it looks set to be as the rampaging Red's of Jurgen Klopp's Liverpool side do battle with Zinedine Zidane's Real Madrid outfit.
It's advantage Real Madrid on the injury front, with every member of the Madrid squad managing to get themselves fit for this one. Having won the competition as a player, Zidane will be delighted to have a fully fit squad from which to select as he bids to repeat the trick as a manager.
The main question surrounding the Madrid starting eleven centres on whether Gareth Bale will be handed a start. The Welshman has done well when called upon but Zidane has shown a tendency to prefer the link up play of Karim Benzema and may do so again here.
Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain has had his name added to the long term injury list alongside Joel Matip and Emre Can for Liverpool. James Milner is expected to make it on time though.

This has all the makings of an absolute classic as two of the most attack minded sides in the competition do battle. Whereas for Real Madrid much hinges on Cristiano Ronaldo, Liverpool have a formidable threat coming from all angles across their front three. Should Real stop Salah, they will still have Firmino and Mané to worry about. Not many sides have managed to stop all three this season, and that more diversified attack may well see Liverpool just edge this.

Prediction: Real Madrid 2 - 3 Liverpool

Harry85

Half time: 0 - 0
Full time: 3 - 1
Shots:  14 - 13
Shots on target: 5 - 2
Corner Kicks: 9 - 5
Possession: 66% - 34%

Just the one card in the game with referee Milorad Mazic issuing the yellow to Sadio Mané of Liverpool.

Liverpool started much the brighter of the two sides, pressing Real Madrid back early and looking the team most likely. In the end though events would conspire against Jurgen Klopp's gallant Reds.

The first blow came on the half hour mark. Initially recovering to play on following an awkward tangle with Sergio Ramos, the Premier League player of the year Mohamed Salah eventually succumbed to what is suspected to be a dislocated shoulder. Devastating for Liverpool on the night and potentially also a hammer blow to Egypt's World Cup aspirations.

Liverpool seemed to take a while to clear their heads following Salah's departure - Karim Benzema having an effort rightfully chalked off for offside - but did make it into the break on level terms.

Then in the 51st minute disaster struck. Whether the occasion was simply all too much for him or he had a total lapse in concentration, quite what Loris Karius was thinking when attempting to roll the ball out with Benzema in close proximity, only he knows. The ball made it as far as the Frenchman's outstretched leg and deflected into the empty net. A bizarre goal for a Sunday League game never mind the biggest match in club football.

Credit to Liverpool though, they hit back almost immediately. James Milner's corner from the right being met by Dejan Lovren who headed towards goal. Sadio Mané showing great predatory instincts to stick out a leg and divert the ball into the net. 1-1.

Then came the moment of brilliance that will be shown time and time again when this match is remembered. Only on the pitch for a couple of minutes, Gareth Bale met Marcelo's cross from the left with a simply sensational overhead kick from the edge of the area. Karius no chance as the ball flew into the top left corner. Sensational strike.

As much as Liverpool pushed they were unable to create anything really clear cut and their spirit was finally broken by a second howler from Karius. Bale's strike from range was on target and swerving slightly, but the Liverpool keeper had time to watch the ball all the way onto his gloves, and then completely through his gloves as he flapped it into his own net. To make what must be the two biggest mistakes of his career in the same game is bad enough, to do so on the biggest stage of all was simply catastrophic and too much for Liverpool to recover from.

So, it's Real Madrid yet again, and they didn't even need Cristiano Ronaldo in the end, with the Portuguese being well marshalled throughout. Zinedine Zidane's men become the first side to win the trophy three years in a row in the Champions League era.

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