Teamwork makes the dream work

Champions League: Actual Madrid’s late magic beats Bayern Munich, sends 14-time winners to the ultimate


Actual Madrid will play for a fifteenth European title in subsequent month’s Champions League ultimate in London.

The continent’s most profitable group scored two late targets to beat a 1-0 deficit and beat Bayern Munich on Wednesday within the semifinal second leg within the Spanish capital. Actual substitute Joselu had each targets, which got here within the 88th and 91st minutes.

The end result wasn’t with out controversy, although: Bayern had what they thought was a final gasp equalizer dominated out due to a blown offside name; video replays confirmed that the referee’s assistant erroneously raised his flag, inflicting the middle ref to cease play. 

Los Blancos‘ will not care. Their victory units up a gathering with one other German aspect, Borussia Dortmund, in membership soccer’s most necessary match on June 1 at Wembley Stadium.

Beneath are a number of fast ideas on Wednesday’s thriller. 

Play of the sport

Davies’ opener was stunning. The winger reduce in from the left wing within the 68th minute and unleashed an unstoppable shot previous Actual keeper Andriy Lunin and into the aspect netting. It was a worthy first profession Champions League strike for the Canadian:

It has been an attention-grabbing season for the 23-year-old, a longtime starter for Bayern who helped the membership win this competitors in 2020. Davies hasn’t been a primary alternative this marketing campaign below supervisor Thomas Tuchel; he got here in off the substitutes’ bench on Wednesday after Serge Gnabry left with an harm late within the first half. The speedster’s wonderful strike was a reminder to each Bayern and Actual — which is reportedly inquisitive about bringing Davies to Madrid this summer time — of his all-world potential. 

Turning level

Actual Madrid’s historical past within the competitors appears to present Los Blancos superpowers, particularly at residence. So it was once more at Estadio Bernabeu. Joselu, a 34-year-old journeyman who had by no means appeared within the Champions League earlier than this season, modified all the pieces when he equalized with simply two minutes of standard time to play:

With the momentum successfully swung at that time, Madridistas needed to fancy their probabilities in further time. Joselu made certain it by no means bought that far.

Key stat

It is onerous to argue that Actual did not should advance based mostly on the numbers, with the hosts dominating by each single metric. Maybe essentially the most gaudy was photographs, with Actual holding a 19-8 benefit.

What’s subsequent for Bayern Munich?

It is a merciless finish to a depressing season for Bayern, which noticed its 11-year stranglehold on the Bundesliga title ended by Bayer Leverkusen. German Cup elimination meant the Champions League was the one salvation for Tuchel — who had already agreed to depart the membership at season’s finish — and his group.

They have been shut. Actually shut. However the chilly onerous actuality is that Bayern expects to win each trophy it competes for, and it got here up empty-handed on each entrance in 2024-25. Hey, a minimum of motivation will not be a problem subsequent 12 months.

What’s subsequent for Actual Madrid?

A primary-ever ultimate at Wembley. That it occurred isn’t any shock; with the all-important second leg at residence, Actual was all the time going to have the benefit after leaving Munich final week with a share of the spoils, However the virtually comically predicable manner that it occurred speaks to the aura surrounding Europe’s most embellished aspect and an undeniable fact: when Europe’s most coveted trophy is at stake, Actual Madrid isn’t crushed earlier than the ultimate whistle sounds.

Doug McIntyre is a soccer author for FOX Sports activities. Earlier than becoming a member of FOX Sports activities in 2021, he was a employees author with ESPN and Yahoo Sports activities and he has lined United States males’s and girls’s nationwide groups at a number of FIFA World Cups. Observe him on Twitter @ByDougMcIntyre.

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