Champions League demands big teams and that’s what Real Madrid proved on Saturday evening by winning the coveted title for the 10th time.
Champions League demands big teams and that’s what Real Madrid proved on Saturday evening by winning the coveted title for the 10th time thanks to extra time goals from Gareth Bale, Marcelo and Cristiano Ronaldo as they came from behind in dramatic circumstances to beat Atletico Madrid 4-1 in Lisbon.
The La Liga champions Atletico Madrid were all set in for the party mode to crown themselves as the European champions untill Real defender Sergio Ramos took the game into extra time with a towering header in the 93rd minute. Earlier in the game, Atletico took the lead in the 35 minute thanks to a powerful header from defender Diego Godin.
And for the second time this season, having already scored the winner to hand Real the Copa del Rey against Barcelona last month, the most expensive player ever, Gareth Bale scored the crucial goal when he headed into an empty net after opposition keeper Thibaut Courtois had parried Angel di Maria’s effort.
With Atletico committed to finding an equaliser, Real on the counter-attack at will and left-back Marcelo killed the game off when his low shot had too much power for Courtois before Ronaldo sealed his return to Lisbon with a fourth from the penalty spot and taking his tally to 17 goals.
Real Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti, meanwhile, became the first man since Liverpool manager Bob Paisley to win the competition three times.
Atletico suffered a massive blow in the beginning of the game when their top scorer Diego Costa had to be substituted when the Spanish striker hobbled off to be replaced by Adrian Lopez. As the match went into extra time, stamina and the work rate took a toll on the Atletico players as they surged forward for a goal.
Real Madrid on the other hand had to give credit to their star winger Angel Di Maria who was the star performer on the big night. Even though the likes of Cristiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale were kept quiet by the opposition defence, the Argentine winger was at his superlative best.