Champions League: Real Madrid 1 – 0 Atlético
Real through after late goal by Javier Hernández
Atlético Madrid have been knocked out of the UEFA Champions League after falling to Real Madrid in an intense match at the Bernabeú.
A late goal by Javier Hernández was the only thing separating the two sides over the course of 180 minutes.
With just a few minutes remaining on the clock, Cristiano Ronaldo slid through the Rojiblanco defence after a clever one-two with James Rodríguez, and the Portuguese star enabled his teammate Hernández to score from close range.
The goal by the Mexican came within seconds after Diego Simeone had made a defensive substitution as he was preparing to grind out the overtime period and let the game be decided by a penalty shoot-out. Cholo’s hand was forced by the sending off of Arda Turan, who received his second booking in the 76th minute.
The Turk went studs up into a challenge, and although he appeared to miss Sergio Ramos entirely, referee Brych fell for the Spaniard’s theatrics and decided to show Arda his second yellow of the game.
The red card changed the dynamic of the game entirely, as up to that point the match was balanced. Real dominated possession, but other than through some set pieces failed to really threaten the Atleti defence. The Colchoneros themselves went forward sporadically and weren’t able of breaking the deadlock.
Whenever Real did get past Miranda & Co, they continued to find Jan Oblak in their way. The ‘keeper was the best player on the pitch in last week’s encounter and did well on Wednesday night to deny Hernández, Ramos and Varane.
Just before half time Oblak made his most impressive save when he blocked an attempt by Cristiano Ronaldo from close range.
Atlético on the other hand hardly ever went near Iker Casillas and failed to create any danger off their notorious set pieces. In-form striker Antoine Griezmann was largely invisible and was subbed off early on by Simeone.
With so few opportunities over the course of two games, Atlético have little to complain about, although this feels like a lost opportunity for revenge of last year’s Champions League final considering we’ve again fallen to a late goal.
|Real Madrid||1 0||Atlético Madrid|
|UEFA Champions League|
|22 April 2015|
|Raúl García (65')|