UCL RO16: Champions Real Madrid comeback to trounce sorry Liverpool
Real Madrid continued their dominance over Liverpool as they came from behind to claim a 5-2 win over Liverpool in their UEFA Champions League Round of 16 first leg clash at Anfield. The reigning champions recovered from two early setbacks to secure a huge win in Merseyside.
After facing each other in last season’s Champions League final, Real Madrid and Liverpool renewed their rivalry in the first knockout round this season.
Liverpool had a dream start to the match as Darwin Nunez latched onto a pass from Mohamed Salah and flicked home the ball after only four minutes of the encounter.
Real Madrid were yet to awaken from their slumber as the home side doubled their advantage following a gaffe by goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois. The Belgian shot-stopper miscontrolled a pass back, allowing Salah to nip in and fire an effort past him in the 14th minute, becoming Liverpool’s record goalscorer in the competition and also equalling Didier Drogba as Africa’s leading scorer.
Real Madrid started their comeback just seven minutes later as Brazilian winger Vinicius Jr rifled home an effort from inside the box despite being surrounded by red shirts.
Liverpool goalkeeper Alisson, then decided to gift their visitors an equaliser in the 36th minute as he smashed a clearance into his countryman Vinicius Jr and saw the ball ricochet into the back of the net.
The comeback was complete just two minutes into the second half as Real Madrid took full advantage of hesitant defending from Liverpool. A free-kick from Luka Modric was headed home by Eder Militao to put Los Blancos ahead for the first time.
Real Madrid captain Karim Benzema marked his return from injury with a goal as he saw an effort deflect into the back of the net after receiving a pass from Rodrygo in the 55th minute. The Ballon d’Or holder scored his second of the night after receiving a pass from Vinicius Jr. The French striker dribbled past Alisson before stroking his effort into the net in the 67th minute.
Real Madrid take a huge step towards the last eight of the competition. Los Blancos have also become the first side to score 4+ goals against Liverpool at Anfield in European competition history.