Real Madrid reach Champions League final

April 30, 2014 - 6:16:08 am
Real Madrid’s Portuguese forward Cristiano Ronaldo (right) celebrates after scoring at the end of the UEFA Champions League second-leg semi-final football match against FC Bayern Munich in Munich, southern Germany, yesterday. Real Madrid tore apart Bayern Munich’s ragged defence apart with a ruthless first-half display as they thrashed the defending champions 4-0 in their own stadium to reach their first Champions League final for 12 years yesterday. 

 

MUNICH, Germany: Real Madrid reached their first Champions League final for 12 years with an historic 4-0 win at Bayern Munich in yesterday’s semi-final, second leg to knock the holders out.

Having won last week’s first-leg 1-0 in Madrid, Real won the semi-final 5-0 on aggregate as Pep Guardiola’s Bayern suffered their heaviest home defeat in European competition.

Bayern had previously never lost at home by more than two goals in Europe as the Bavarian giants saw their dreams of reaching a fourth Champions League final in five years crushed.

Real are one game away from the ‘Decima’ - their tenth European title - and will face either neighbours Atletico Madrid or Chelsea in the May 24 final in Lisbon.

Real centre-back Sergio Ramos produced two early bullet headers to dismiss Bayern’s dreams of becoming the first team to defend the Champions League title.

World Player of the Year Cristiano Ronaldo then made it 3-0 at the break before the Real superstar netted his 49th goal of the season with a free kick just before the final whistle.

The only downside to Real’s stunning win in Germany was the loss of Xabi Alonso for the Lisbon final after he picked up his third booking of the campaign.

But there was no denying an historic night for Real, especially for coach Carlo Ancelotti who has now never lost to Bayern in eight matches, six times with former club AC Milan and twice with Madrid.

There was a minute’s silence before kick-off for former Barcelona coach Tito Vilanova, who died on Friday at the age of 45, and Vujadin Boskov, the former Real coach who passed away on Sunday aged 82.

Real needed just 16 minutes to take the lead at the Allianz Arena as Ramos powered home his first header from Luka Modric’s corner to silence the home support.

It was the start of a miserable five minutes for Bayern as centre-back Dante was shown a yellow card for clumsily scything down Ronaldo just before Ramos struck again.

When Angel Di Maria swung in a free-kick, centre-back Pepe flicked it on for Ramos to head home his second goal in just four minutes to leave Bayern reeling.

Real then compounded Bayern’s misery as Di Maria played Karim Benzema into space and the Frenchman found Bale, who accelerated away.

His pass was drilled home by Ronaldo on 34 minutes, breaking the record for most Champions League goals in a campaign, to leave the hosts 3-0 down at the break and on the ropes.

A foul by Xabi Alonso on 

Despite Bayern’s best efforts, Real’s defence held firm and then Ronaldo put the final nail in the holders’ coffin with his second of the game when his free-kick shot under the Munich wall on 90 minutes. AFP

 

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