Champions League

Five things we learned from Bayern Munich v Real Madrid

2018-04-26 07:02
Cristiano Ronaldo (Gallo Images)

Munich - Marco Asensio came off the bench to score the winner as Real Madrid claimed a 2-1 first-leg lead over Bayern Munich in their Champions League semi-final on Wednesday.

Here are five things we learned from the first leg at the Allianz Arena:

Real have measure of Bayern

Real Madrid have had the wood on Bayern in recent seasons and the Germans now need an unlikely comeback at the Santiago Bernabeu next week to turn the form book around.

The humiliation of a 4-0 second-leg thrashing at the last-four stage four years ago was the lowest point of Pep Guardiola's spell in charge at Bayern, while Cristiano Ronaldo scored five over two legs as Real won a thrilling quarter-final last season in extra time. Like 12 months ago, Bayern created plenty of chances against the Real defence, but were made to pay for errors at the back.

Changing of the Real guard

It was a rare quiet night for Ronaldo as he failed to score for the first time in 12 Champions League outings, but the absence of Karim Benzema and Gareth Bale from the starting XI called their futures into question.

When Zinedine Zidane reshuffled at half-time, it wasn't one of the two missing members of 'BBC' that he turned to, but Asensio. The youngster scored the crucial winning goal, while Lucas Vazquez provided the assist and excelled on the wing before holding off the dangerous Franck Ribery when switched to right-back after Dani Carvajal's injury.

Maverick Marcelo

Marcelo was all over the place defensively at times and was partly at fault for Bayern's opener, but he has now scored more goals than any other defender in the Champions League knockout stage.

His seventh goal in the latter stages was a magnificent strike, adding to his goals against Paris Saint-Germain and Juventus earlier in the campaign. For all the gaps he leaves behind on his raids forwards, the Brazilian more than makes up for it by being one of Real's most consistent attacking threats.

Bayern need fresh blood

Bayern have not bolstered their squad as much as their fellow European giants in recent years and it showed on Wednesday. Ribery, 35, was their best player on the night, but his fellow 2013 Champions League winners Jerome Boateng and Arjen Robben both hobbled off in the first half.

The German champions have barely been tested in romping to seven straight Bundesliga titles, but have repeatedly been shown their shortcomings in Europe.

A 3-0 loss to PSG in the group stage saw veteran coach Jupp Heynckes return in place of Carlo Ancelotti in October, but on Wednesday's evidence, Bayern also need fresh blood on the pitch when Niko Kovac takes over as coach at the end of the season.

Semi-final sloppiness

After Liverpool's 5-2 victory over Roma on Tuesday saw some horrific defending from the Italians, both Real and Bayern were sloppy at the back and in possession during the second semi-final.

Casemiro and Marcelo were caught out of position for Joshua Kimmich's goal, but goalkeeper Keylor Navas made a terrible error in gambling on the right-back crossing the ball. The two sides were generous in defence at times, with Bayern giving up their hopes of victory on the night with an atrocious pass by Rafinha.

If the final is anything like the two last-four first legs this week, fans can expect a host of goals in Kiev on May 26.

Read more on:    real madrid  |  champions league  |  marcelo  |  soccer
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Tuesday, 23 October 2018
AEK Athens v Bayern Munchen, Olympiako Stadio Spyros Louis 18:55
Young Boys v Valencia, STADE DE SUISSE Wankdorf Bern 18:55
Real Madrid v Viktoria Plzen, Estadio Santiago Bernabeu 21:00
Ajax v Benfica, Johan Cruijff ArenA 21:00
Shakhtar Donetsk v Manchester City, Oblasny SportKomplex Metalist 21:00
Manchester United v Juventus, Old Trafford 21:00
Roma v CSKA Moskva, Stadio Olimpico 21:00
Hoffenheim v Olympique Lyonnais, Wirsol Rhein-Neckar-Arena 21:00
Wednesday, 24 October 2018
Club Brugge v Monaco, Jan Breydelstadion 18:55
PSV v Tottenham Hotspur, Philips Stadion 18:55
Liverpool v Crvena Zvezda, Anfield 21:00
Barcelona v Internazionale, Camp Nou 21:00
PSG v Napoli, Parc des Princes 21:00
Lokomotiv Moskva v Porto, RZD Arena 21:00
Borussia Dortmund v Atletico Madrid, Signal-Iduna-Park 21:00
Galatasaray v Schalke 04, Turk Telekom Stadyumu 21:00
Tuesday, 06 November 2018
Monaco v Club Brugge, Stade Louis II 19:55
Crvena Zvezda v Liverpool, Stadion Rajko Mitic 19:55
Porto v Lokomotiv Moskva, Estadio Do Dragao 22:00
Atletico Madrid v Borussia Dortmund, Estadio Wanda Metropolitano 22:00
Internazionale v Barcelona, Stadio Giuseppe Meazza 22:00
Napoli v PSG, Stadio San Paolo 22:00
Schalke 04 v Galatasaray, Veltins-Arena 22:00
Tottenham Hotspur v PSV, Wembley Stadium 22:00
Wednesday, 07 November 2018
Valencia v Young Boys, Estadio de Mestalla 19:55
CSKA Moskva v Roma, VEB Arena 19:55
Juventus v Manchester United, Allianz Stadium 22:00
Bayern Munchen v AEK Athens, Allianz-Arena 22:00
Viktoria Plzen v Real Madrid, Doosan Arena 22:00
Benfica v Ajax, Estadio do Sport Lisboa e Benfica (da Luz) 22:00
Manchester City v Shakhtar Donetsk, Etihad Stadium 22:00
Olympique Lyonnais v Hoffenheim, Groupama Stadium 22:00
Tuesday, 27 November 2018
AEK Athens v Ajax, Olympiako Stadio Spyros Louis 19:55
CSKA Moskva v Viktoria Plzen, VEB Arena 19:55
Juventus v Valencia, Allianz Stadium 22:00
Bayern Munchen v Benfica, Allianz-Arena 22:00
Olympique Lyonnais v Manchester City, Groupama Stadium 22:00
Manchester United v Young Boys, Old Trafford 22:00
Roma v Real Madrid, Stadio Olimpico 22:00
Hoffenheim v Shakhtar Donetsk, Wirsol Rhein-Neckar-Arena 22:00
Wednesday, 28 November 2018
Atletico Madrid v Monaco, Estadio Wanda Metropolitano 19:55
Lokomotiv Moskva v Galatasaray, RZD Arena 19:55
Porto v Schalke 04, Estadio Do Dragao 22:00
PSG v Liverpool, Parc des Princes 22:00
PSV v Barcelona, Philips Stadion 22:00
Borussia Dortmund v Club Brugge, Signal-Iduna-Park 22:00
Napoli v Crvena Zvezda, Stadio San Paolo 22:00
Tottenham Hotspur v Internazionale, Wembley Stadium 22:00
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