When European kings Real Madrid created another magical night to establish themselves as “favorites” for a 15th title, Karim Benzema declared, “We want this Champions League again.”
Many teams would have folded after falling behind 2-0 to Liverpool in just 14 minutes at a joyful Anfield, but Vinicius Jr. scored twice, Eder Militao powered in a header, and then Real won 5-2 thanks to goals from him and Karim Benzema.
No away team had ever surpassed three goals in a European match at Anfield. A Champions League match had never been won by three goals after being down two goals.
Madrid is the real European royalty—”real” is the Spanish word for royal. They have won 14 European Cups overall, five of which came in the last nine years. Two of those last victories came at Jurgen Klopp’s Reds’ expense.
We produced goals and played with character. We want to compete in the Champions League once more, Benzema remarked. “Therefore, a contest was created that was enjoyable for both players and spectators.
Liverpool is left grasping at thin air after brutal devastation.
“In the first fifteen minutes, we witnessed the real Real Madrid. This level of football is challenging. They got off to a stronger start than we did, but this was a big game, and we were prepared.”
Alan Shearer, a former player for Newcastle and England, was quite impressed while covering the game for BBC Radio 5 Live.
Don’t panic, Real Madrid, he urged. “They are confident that their heritage will help them succeed because they have experience with similar circumstances. Real returned to the game thanks to their expertise and knowledge, which has been great and unbelievable.
“Liverpool was recently demolished by Real Madrid. You’ve witnessed a masterclass in maintaining composure. A daring man would place a wager against Real Madrid. Well, they can win it without a doubt.
“They have a lot of experience as a club. They have experienced and seen it all. They are aware of their obligations.”
At the 2018 final in Kyiv, which Real won 3-1, Adam Lallana, who is currently at Brighton, represented Liverpool.
“I was speechless when I watched Real Madrid. This group is changing. I thought I was seeing the competition’s favorites, “he stated.
Barcelona, who failed to advance from their Champions League group, is eight points ahead of Real in La Liga. In contrast, Carlo Ancelotti’s team is usually a different animal in Europe.
Their last season’s success revolved around dramatic comebacks. In the round of 16, they were down 2-0 to Paris Saint-Germain. In the quarterfinals, they were down 1-0 to Chelsea with 10 minutes left. And in the semifinals, they needed two goals from Rodrygo in the final minute to tie the game and force extra time.
They were 11 minutes into the first leg of that City match in Manchester when they fell behind 2-0 and lost 4-3.
Naturally, we weren’t expecting to start off the way we did, but Ancelotti stated, “At 2-0 down, I thought of the City away leg last year with the hope that we could do the same.” “But, things worked out even better.
“Unfortunately, this tie isn’t over,” said Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp after the first half. “Liverpool are a superb club that made us suffer.”
Vinicius, Benzema, and Modric take center stage. Team Real is made up of both young and seasoned players.
Benzema, Dani Carvajal, Nacho, Luka Modric, and Toni Kroos are the five members of the group that played at Anfield and have each won five European Cups (who won one of his five with Bayern Munich).
The Real legend Paco Gento holds the record for most victories with six from 1956 to 1966.
No player has scored more goals in the Champions League or European Cup against Liverpool than Benzema (six) and Vinicius (five). In the 2018 championship game at Stadium de France in May, Benzema scored while Vinicius scored the game’s lone goal.
22 is a young age for Vinicius.
Ancelotti stated following this most recent victory, “I think Vinicius Junior is the most decisive player anywhere in the world right now – the one who determines matches most consistently.”
Likewise, Klopp. He claimed that Vinicius was among the top players in the world.
With 16 goals this year, the Brazilian is Real’s leading goal scorer across all competitions. Next on 14 is Benzema, the current Ballon d’Or winner. He made European history by scoring at Anfield at the age of 35.
On BT Sport, former Reds midfielder Steven Gerrard stated: “One of the guys who is excellent at luring opponents out is Benzema. He is undoubtedly among the finest players in the entire world.”
Rio Ferdinand, a former defender for England, referred to the Frenchman as “the best complete number nine I have ever seen.”
At Anfield, real midfielder Modric also attracted the attention. At the age of 37, Lallana commented, “To play like that is unbelievable.”
We’re talking about real greatness here, Gerrard stated. “Modric and Benzema compete at an entirely different level from most players,” said one observer.