UCL: Vinicius, Sane on target as Real Madrid & Bayern settle for s/final first-leg draw

UCL: Vinicius, Sane on target as Real Madrid & Bayern settle for s/final first-leg draw

The clash between Real Madrid and Bayern Munich, which is the most played fixture in the history of the UEFA Champions League as this marked the 26th time they have played against each other and the eighth time they’ve been drawn in the semifinal stage, served fans with a footballing spectacle that ended in a four-goal thriller.

Vinicius Junior scored twice for Madrid, while Leroy Sane and Harry Kane were both on target for Bayern as the two European giants played out a 2-2 draw at Allianz Arena in the first leg of their semifinal encounter on Tuesday.

The Bavarians were on the front foot early on, and Sane came close to scoring the first goal of the game in the second minute, but his low strike, which was heading for the far corner, was saved by the leg of Andriy Lunin in goal for the visitors.

The Germans came close once more, but this time, it was England international Harry Kane who tested Lunin, but his effort was too weak to trouble the Madrid goalie.

After a period of sustained pressure from Bayern, it was Carlo Ancelotti’s men that stunned the home crowd as Vinicius broke the deadlock against the run of play. Toni Kross picked up the ball in midfield before threading a through pass to the Brazilian forward, who made no mistake as he slotted it past Manuel Neuer to put Los Blancos in the lead.

The second half began with Madrid in front, and Kroos almost got on the scoresheet against his former club, but his curling effort was parried away by Neuer in the 51st minute.

However, just two minutes later, Bayern drew level through Sane, who made no mistakes when provided with another opportunity. The German winger drove straight into Madrid’s box after picking up the ball on the right side before letting fly a ferocious left-footed strike into Lunin’s near post to restore parity in the game.

The Bavarians soon turned the tie on its head as French referee Clement Turpin signaled for a penalty kick after Jamal Musiala was brought down needlessly by Lucas Vazquez in the danger area. Up stepped Kane, who sent Lunin the wrong way with his spot kick, scoring his eighth goal in the Champions League this season and his 43rd goal in as many matches in all competitions, as Bayern completed a spirited comeback in the space of four minutes.

“We can take a lot of positives from today,” Kane said. “There are some small details that we have to take away and get right because we can get punished. We’ve got to take positivity into next week. We’ve just got to find a way to get it done. Real Madrid away is going to be tough, but we’ve got to go there with full belief and go for the win.”

Thomas Tuchel’s men should have gotten their third goal through Eric Dier, but the English defender failed to convert his chance as his header was too easy for Lunin to save.

On the other end, Vinicius was also denied by Neuer, with the German goalkeeper thwarting away the Brazilian’s left-footed effort after he was played through on goal by Luka Modric.

However, Real Madrid No. 7 would not be denied the spot kick shortly after, as Los Blancos were awarded a penalty after Kim Min-jae hacked down Rodyrgo Goes in the box. Vinicius sent Neuer the wrong way for his second of the game and his fifth in the Champions League this campaign.

“Right now, after this result, we need to keep our heads clear, be content with the position we are in and rest up as much as possible before the second leg,” Vinicius, who got the Man of the Match Awards said.

“We always play to win, want to win, but we know what the Champions League is like – you can’t gift the ball away, you can’t concede goals because there will always be top rivals to take advantage.”

The match ended with the two sides, who have a combined 20 European Cup/Champions League, sharing the spoils, and Bayern remain without a win in their last eight games against Real, with two draws and six defeats.

The tie will head to Santiago Bernabeu for the second time on Wednesday, May 8, and Los Blancos have history on their side, having progressed on 18 of the previous 19 occasions when they have avoided defeat away from home in the first leg of the knockout phase in the Champions League.

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