Real Madrid booked the ticket to Cardiff tonight at Vicente Calderón despite losing (2-1) with Atlético Madrid. Despite the terrible 15 first minutes when Los Blancos conceded two goals, Isco showed up to score the decisive goal. Zidane’s side is only one step away to touch the European glory again. This is no luck. This is a great team.
Zinedine Zidane included Danilo in the line-up as a right back, so Nacho stayed on the bench. Isco was Bale’s replacement as it was expected and Simeone put a very offensive line-up on the pitch. They needed a lot of goals. And as it was expected, Atlético started the game looking for Keylor’s goal. In the 3rd minute, Danilo was already booked and, the next minute, Koke had the first chance but Navas saved it.
Real Madrid also tried to attacked and Casemiro had the first chance with a header, but he found Oblak again. However, Los Blancos were very nervous and Atlético scored in the 12th minute with a corner kick headed by Saúl. It was time to suffer. And Real Madrid were completely lost. The second goal arrived in the 15th minute, with Griezmann scoring from the penalty spot. Varane committed a clumsy penalty.
In the next 15 minutes nothing happened. Atlético Madrid went back and defend, whereas Los Blancos had the ball but without creating any chances. The script was written by Simeone. From there Atlético didn’t arrive to the goal and Real Madrid started to control the ball, especially leaded by Isco and Modric. In the 42nd minute, Benzema controlled the ball close to the corner, dribbled three players and assist to Kroos. The German tapped the ball in but Oblak saved it. This time the ball went to Isco, who scored. Cardiff was closer and Karim put his magic touch for it. Los Blancos were saved before the half time.
Atlético Madrid were shocked with the goal and they couldn’t react in the second half. Actually, Real Madrid had the ball, again with Isco and Modric with a superb performance. The game could change in the 66th minute. Another mistake committed by Danilo, who shouldn’t play these kind of games, ended up in a double chance to Atlético, but Keylor Navas made two great saves.
It was the worst moment for Real Madrid in a quite second half. Actually, Real Madrid deserved to draw the match and they could do it in a couple of chances missed by Benzema. Correa came in to shake a bit the game and he created a very clear chance, but again Sergio Ramos was in place. Also, we should highlight the great performance of Keylor Navas, very criticized this season.
Suffering, as Zidane predicted before the game, but Real Madrid are in the final of the Champions League for the third time in four years. No one has won back to back titles in the Champions League and Zidane’s side is very close. We can still dream with another title.