UEFA Champions League | Real Madrid 1 (4) – Juventus 3 (3)

A controversial penalty converted by Cristiano Ronaldo deep in the stoppage time earned Real Madrid their qualification following a 4-3 aggregate win.

Cristiano Ronaldo before taking the penalty kick that sent Real Madrid through
Cristiano Ronaldo before taking the penalty kick that sent Real Madrid through

Real Marid started the match as favourites after securing a comfortable 3-0 win over Juventus. On the other hand, Juventus were eager to bounce back from last week’s defeat and get the most out of this match.

The Bianconeri made a flying start to the match as they went ahead after just two minutes. Sami Khedira received the ball from Douglas Costa and delivered a cross towards Mario Mandzukic who headed the ball past Keylor Navas.

Juventus went close to double their advantage on the 8th minute. Costa’s cross from the right went into the path of Gonzalo Higuain whose close range effort was blocked by Navas.

Real Madrid hit back on the 10th minute. Luka Modric served Gareth Bale inside the penalty area and the latter saw his shot being saved by Gianluigi Buffon. From the rebound, the Welsh man attempted a backheel that hit the side netting.

The Spanish giants had a goal disallowed four minutes later. Ronaldo’s shot was pushed away by Buffon. The ball fell for Isco and the Spanish player placed it past Buffon. However, the assistant referee raised his flag for an offside.

Isco went close again on the 33rd minute. The twenty-five year old received the ball inside the penalty area and fired a shot that failed to hit the target.

A minute later, Isco was played through on the right side of the penalty area, but his effort was blocked by Buffon.

Despite Real Madrid’s efforts, Mandzukic scored again for Juventus on the 39th minute. Stephan Lichsteiner who replaced Mattia De Sciglio early in the match delivered an excellent cross towards the Croatian whose header stunned Navas.

The holders were denied by the post in the additional time prior to half-time. From a free-kick, Toni Kroos lifted a dangerous cross in the box and Raphael Varane sent a header that hit the upright.

Real Madrid started the second half looking to put some pressure on Juventus. They created a good chance on the 57th minute. Ronaldo fired at goal, but Buffon denied him.

Two minutes later, Blaise Matuidi and Miralem Pjanic combined together to tee up Higuain on the edge of the penalty area. The Argentine fired a shot on goal that was saved by Navas.

Allegri’s side completed the comeback on the hour mark. Following a cross by Costa,  Navas initially caught the ball, but then lost it, as the Frenchman converted from close range.

Buffon was on the alert again on the 75th minute. Ronaldo’s shot took a deflection off Pjanic before it got tipped for a corner by the veteran goalkeeper.

Three minutes later, Isco hit a low drive that forced an excellent save from Buffon.

From the resulting corner, Varane received the ball inside the penalty area, but finished wide from close range.

When the game was heading towards extra time, Medhi Benatia challenged Lucas Vazquez and the referee pointed towards the spot. This controversial penalty brought harsh protests from Buffon who was given his marching orders by the English referee. Ronaldo stepped up to take charge of the penalty kick and finished past Wojciech Sczesny.

Real Madrid starting line-up: Keylor Navas, Dani Carvajal, Jesus Vallejo, Raphael Varane, Cristiano Ronaldo, Toni Kroos, Luka Modric, Gareth Bale, Marcelo, Casemiro, Isco

Juventus starting line-up: Gianluigi Buffon, Mattia De Sciglio, Giorgio Chiellini, Madhi Benatia, Miralem Pjanic, Sami Khedira, Gonzalo Higuain, Douglas Costa, Alex Sandro, Blaise Matuidi, Mario Mandzukic

Referee: Michael Oliver (England)

Assistant Referees: Stuart Burt, Simon Bennett

Additional Assistant Referees: Martin Atkinson, Andre Marriner

Fourth Official: Lee Betts

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