Zinedine Zidane Not Expecting Surprises From Liverpool

27 May, 2018, 15:33 | Author: Anita Tucker
  • Ryan Giggs says Gareth Bale could decide Champions League final

Gareth Bale starts on the bench for Real Madrid in Saturday's Champions League final against Liverpool in Kiev, with coach Zinedine Zidane preferring Isco to the Welshman.

It was a night which confirmed Real's ability to superbly manage the biggest of games and highlighted Liverpool's continued problems with the goalkeeping position.

Mane's pace gives Liverpool the ability to trouble any team, but the real blow caused by Salah's injury was that to Liverpool's self-belief.

Ryan Giggs says Gareth Bale could decide Champions League final

It had been uncomfortable for Real, but after Salah departed, they sensed their chance. Mane shone for Liverpool, later hitting the post and forcing Sergio Ramos to make a last-ditch interception as he charged toward goal with only goal separating the sides.

With all of the early play coming the way of Liverpool, it took Ronaldo fifteen minutes or so to see his first real action in the game.

But replays showed Ronaldo had been offside before getting his header away, and the goal was correctly waved away.

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Liverpool: Karis, Robertson, van Dijk, Lovren, Alexander-Arnold, Wijnaldum, Henderson (C), Milner, Mane, Firmino and Salah. Salah rose, but only to leave the field to make way for Adam Lallana.

Cristiano Ronaldo, who now has five Champions League winners medals, could have added a fourth goal for Real near the end but the Portugal forward was distracted as he burst goalwards when a fan ran onto the pitch before being stopped by security.

After collecting a shot, Karius rolled the ball out too casually, neglecting the presence of Benzema who struck out his right foot and dispatched the ball into an empty net.

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Truth be told, James is probably also feeling the mental strain of dragging a woeful supporting cast to the finish line. Boston, on the other hand, finished as the two seed in the Eastern Conference without their two best players.

Bale has been put up for sale by Real president Florentino Perez, who has fielded concrete approaches from Chelsea and Liverpool.

Real Madrid finished a dismal 17 points behind Barcelona as they slumped to a third-place La Liga finish this season.

Bale then sealed Madrid's record-extending 13th European Cup win and piled more misery on Karius with a long-range strike in the 83rd minute which went straight through the hands of the hapless goalkeeper.

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