Skip to content

Real Madrid win Champions League, seal tenth title after dramatic comeback

May 24, 2014, 5:23 PM EDT

Portugal Soccer Champions League Final AP

Real Madrid beat crosstown rivals Atletico Madrid 4-1 after extra time in a gripping UEFA Champions League final in Lisbon, as Real clinched their tenth European cup after a rousing comeback.

La Decima has finally been secured.

The world’s most expensive player, Gareth Bale, was the hero as his 110th minute header put Real 2-1 up and then Marcelo and Cristiano Ronaldo put some gloss on the scoreline late on to give Real the trophy they’ve wanted for over a decade.

Atletico Madrid led in the first half through Diego Godin’s header, following a bad mistake from Real ‘keeper Iker Casillas. That goal looked to be enough to hand Atleti their first-ever UCL title in their 111 year history, but Sergio Ramos popped up with seconds left in regulation to head home and send the match into extra time.

Their latest UCL crown was Real’s first title since 2002 when they beat Bayer Leverkusen in the final in Glasgow, as the final whistle sparked jubilant scenes from the Real fans, players and coaching staff at the Estadio da Luz.

Madrid will, once again, be Real’s as the most decorated club in European Cup history added another title to the trophy cabinet.

MORE: Three things we learned from Real Madrid’s Champions League win

Early on Real started the brighter of the two teams and a marauding run from right back Daniel Carvajal found Karim Benzema but his ball towards Bale was cut out by Atletico ‘keeper Thibaut Courtois.

Diego Costa’s injured hamstring was the big storyline leading up to the game and even though the Spanish international started the match, he walked straight off the pitch and down the tunnel after just nine minutes of the final. It almost looked scripted from Simeone and his staff, as Costa’s final was over and Adrian Lopez replaced him.

Real continued to dominate possession but couldn’t find a way through as the opening stages of the UCL final was extremely tentative. Atletico tried to get things going but after Costa’s early substitution the Spanish champions failed to threaten in the final third apart from sporadic set pieces. Real threatened on the break and Ronaldo hit a dipping free kick on target but Courtois saved well after Angel Di Maria was hacked down by Raul Garcia. Several meaty challenges began to fly in — Sergio Ramos, Sami Khedira and Raul Garcia were all booked in the first half — as the crosstown rivals went at it as half time approached.

source: AP

Casillas was caught out of position and Godin’s header looped over him to make it 1-0.

In the 32nd minute a glorious chance arrived as Tiago inexplicably gave the ball away to Bale and the Welsh wizard carved through the heart of Atletico’s defense but somehow steered his shot wide of the post under intense pressure. Real were getting closer. Then Atleti struck as Godin headed over Casillas, who was floundering in no man’s land after a corner was only half cleared, and Atletico made the most of a goalkeeping blunder from Real’s captain. Uruguayan international Godin scored the crucial goal which won Atletico the La Liga title away at Barcelona just days before and his header gave his side one hand on the UCL trophy heading into half time.

After the interval Real pushed for the equalizer and Ronaldo came close three times in quick succession with a deflected free kick that was tipped over from Courtois, then he saw an effort knocked wide from the resulting corner and then Ronaldo sent another effort off target. Real’s momentum began to build. Up the other end Adrian Lopez struck a volley towards the bottom corner but Real managed to deflect the ball wide as they continued to struggle defending set pieces.

With 30 minutes left Ramos’ ball from the left almost found Ronaldo in the box but the Portuguese forward slightly misjudged his jump and the ball skimmed of his head and wide. The momentum continued to swing in Real’s favor but substitute Isco dragged an effort wide as the clocked ticked down in Lisbon with Atleti 1-0 up.

Real pressed for the equalizer which would send the game into extra time but Bale sent a shot wide, then scuffed another effort into the side-netting and Ronaldo’s acrobatic effort flew over the bar. Atletico defended like lions as the final minutes arrived and Real threw the kitchen sink at their fierce rivals.

Finally Real broke through, as Ramos headed home Luka Modric’s free kick from the right in the 93rd minute to send Real’s fans wild and the game into extra time.

There were plenty of tired legs throughout the extra 30 minutes of play as players from both teams felt the impact of a breathless 90 minutes of action. Modric’s deflected effort in the 108th minute saw Real come close to inching ahead. The crucial moment then arrived in the 110th minute as Bale headed home from close range after Di Maria’s shot was well-saved but the ball popped up perfectly for the Welshman to play the hero. After that Marcelo ran towards goal and smashed in a low effort, then Ronaldo bagged a late penalty to make it 4-1 and hand Real the title.

Real Madrid are European champions.

LINEUPS

Real Madrid: Casillas; Carvajal, Ramos, Varane, Coentrao (Marcelo, 59′); Khedira (Isco, 59′), Modric, Di Maria; Bale, Benzema (Morata, 79′), Ronaldo.

Goals: Ramos, (93′), Bale (110′), Marcelo (118′), Ronaldo (120′)

Atletico Madrid: Courtois; Juanfran, Godin, Miranda, Filipe Luis (Alderweireld, 83′); Gabi, Tiago, Koke, Raul Garcia (Sosa, 66′); Villa, Diego Costa (Adrian, 9′)

Goal: Godin, (36′)

Latest Posts
  1. Newcastle United turned down by McClaren, will stick with Carver through end of season

    May 6, 2015, 8:11 PM EDT

    Steve McClaren, Derby County FC Getty Images

    Newcastle’s first choice for a new manager has turned them down, so now what?

  2. Bayern Munich players: “We must believe” we can replicate Porto comeback vs. Barcelona

    May 6, 2015, 6:35 PM EDT

    Manuel Neuer, FC Bayern Munich & Luis Suarez, FC Barcelona Getty Images

    It’s a long, long way back for Bayern Munich in the Champions League, but they’re keeping the faith — at least they’re trying to.

  3. Three things we learned from Barcelona’s huge win vs. Bayern Munich

    May 6, 2015, 5:30 PM EDT

    Messi’s magic leads the way as we were treated to a gem of a game at the Nou Camp. Here’s what we learned.

  4. VIDEO: Lionel Messi’s stunning 2nd goal vs. Bayern Munich in Champions League semifinal

    May 6, 2015, 5:05 PM EDT

    Dani Alves & Lionel Messi, FC Barcelona Dani Alves & Lionel Messi, FC Barcelona

    Stop me if you’ve heard this one before: Lionel Messi, the world’s best player, scored a truly unbelievable goal.

  5. Barcelona 3-0 Bayern Munich: Messi magic negates Neuer’s first-half heroics

    May 6, 2015, 4:45 PM EDT

    Lionel Messi, FC Barcelona Lionel Messi, FC Barcelona

    Manuel Neuer was Herculean in the first half, but Lionel Messi was magical during the second 45. Barca have one foot in the final.

  6. Real Madrid most valuable team, worth over $3 billion; five Premier League teams in top 10

    May 6, 2015, 3:59 PM EDT

    FC Barcelona v Real Madrid CF - La Liga Getty Images

    Real lead for a third-straight year, but Bayern Munich, United are the big climbers.

  7. LIVE – UEFA Champions League semifinal: Can Barcelona get payback on beat up Bayern?

    May 6, 2015, 1:54 PM EDT

    Lewandowski Getty Images

    Robert Lewandowski will play despite facial injuries, but a host of other Bayern players are out as Pep Guardiola returns to the Nou Camp.

  8. Freak double injury suddenly puts Rais Mbolhi back in pole position to start for Philadelphia

    May 6, 2015, 12:53 PM EDT

    Mbolhi Getty Images

    Two training ground injuries to both Philadelphia goalkeepers in a matter of seconds has Rais Mbolhi the only man currently under contract who is fit to start.

  9. Burnley defender Michael Duff has red card rescinded, will be available vs Hull City

    May 6, 2015, 12:20 PM EDT

    Duff Getty Images

    They’ll have their defender back, but they can’t have the match back, and that may be the most painful.

  10. Sebastian Lletget reportedly to sign with LA Galaxy

    May 6, 2015, 11:40 AM EDT

    Lletget Getty Images

    The Galaxy have signed a young American midfielder to give them a spark.

  11. Juventus confirms Paul Pogba returns to training, could play vs Real Madrid next week

    May 6, 2015, 10:48 AM EDT

    Pogba Getty Images

    He could bring balance back to the Juventus midfield for the second leg.

  12. WATCH: Incredible whiff from Torino goalkeeper gifts Empoli a lead

    May 6, 2015, 9:49 AM EDT

    Padelli Getty Images

    Oh dear. Ohhhhhh dear. We all know how this one ends. All over YouTube.

  13. Diego Simeone says “it’s only a matter of time” before he manages Lazio

    May 6, 2015, 9:26 AM EDT

    Simeone Getty Images

    “Dressed in black as always” Diego Simeone says all he wants to do is manage the teams he played for.

  14. Luis Suarez surprises Uruguayan cancer patient with video call, brings him to tears

    May 6, 2015, 8:22 AM EDT

    Suarez AP

    Young Mateo got the surprise of a lifetime on what he though was another routine call with a doctor.

  15. American Will Packwood set to join MLS, with New England interested

    May 6, 2015, 7:50 AM EDT

    Packwood Getty Images

    Birmingham City confirmed Packwood’s early release from his contract to “possibly” join the Revolution, whatever that means.

  16. VIDEO: “I Was There” visits Chelsea fans across the country as Mourinho’s men clinch the title

    May 5, 2015, 11:25 PM EDT

    If you’d like your supporters group to be featured on future episodes of ‘I Was There’ simply send pictures/video to @NBCSportsSoccer or on NBC Sports Soccer on Facebook using the #IWasThere hashtag.

  17. MLS Snapshot: Houston Dynamo 0-1 San Jose Earthquakes

    May 5, 2015, 10:46 PM EDT

    Chris Wondolowski, San Jose Earthquakes Getty Images

    Adam Jahn scored with his head while David Bingham made a big penalty stop to lead San Jose to all three points.

  18. UEFA Champions League preview: Barcelona vs. Bayern Munich

    May 5, 2015, 9:43 PM EDT

    Pep Guardiola faces his former club when Bayern Munich travels to Camp Nou to take on Barcelona in the first leg of their Champions League semifinal matchup.

Featured video

PST Extra: Analyzing the relegation battle