Seven takeaways from the Champions League final.
Gareth Bale's wonder goal
Gareth Bale has had a difficult season at Real Madrid, regularly left out by Zinedine Zidane he has struggled for game time and there has been plenty of speculation linking him with a move away. He was left on the bench for the biggest game of Madrid's season, the Champions League final, but when Bale was introduced from the bench he made an instant impact. Bale had been on the pitch for a matter of minutes when Marcelo played the ball in from the left wing, Bale turned and while moving away from goal produced a spectacular overhead kick which nestled in the top corner. This is possibly the greatest goal ever to grace a Champions League final and will be remembered for years to come.
Karim Benzema's Bizarre Goal
Loris Karius' time at Liverpool has been highly scrutinised with those who say he is not good enough to play for the famous club. Karius' performance will be remembered for years to come but for all the wrong reasons. The goalkeeper is to blame for two of Madrid's three goals. The first was scored by Karim Benzema and was bizarre to say the least. Karius easily collected a ball over the top and immediately went to roll the ball out to one of his teammates. Benzema was close to the goalkeeper and saw Karius go to roll the ball out he then simply stuck his leg out and blocked the ball, which rolled directly into the goal completing one of the strangest goals in Champions League history.
Liverpool Travel Problems
Liverpool fans experienced major issues travelling to the game, airlines cancelled many direct flights to Ukraine and this meant that some fans had to make alternative arrangements which led to some taking four flights to reach Kyiv. Others missed the final entirely due to the problems. There were also issues with extortionate accommodation prices with many hotels hiking their prices up. This led to residents in Kyiv opening their homes up and offering accommodation to Liverpool fans for free.
Mohammed Salah's Injury
Mohammed Salah has had an amazing season for Liverpool scoring 44 goals in 51 games. He started the game brightly helping Liverpool's attacking press to keep Madrid penned in. But disaster struck when Salah and Sergio Ramos tangled and the pair fell, Ramos fell onto Salah's arm which led to the Egyptian being stretchered off with a suspected dislocated shoulder. If this initial assessment is correct then there is a high chance he will miss the World Cup which is a blow to football fans in Egypt and around the world.
Loris Karius' Howler
Having already made a huge mistake for the first goal, Karius would have wanted nothing more to do for the rest of the night, but this wasn't the case. When Gareth Bale shot from thirty yards though, Karius must have thought the save would be easy enough, it wasn't. The ball moved slightly in the air but was still straight at the goalkeeper, he has a history of punching the ball when he could catch it and had he done that here it may have been a different story but Karius went to catch the ball and fumbled it into his own net, this completed a horror show for the 24-year-old German who now faces a tough couple of months.
Three in a row for Real
Real Madrid made history last year when they became the first team ever to retain the Champions League trophy, it was a monumental achievement in an era where European football is incredibly strong and there were plenty of other teams who could win it. So for Real Madrid to defend the title again and become champions for a third successive year is astonishing. It is seen as a feat that may not be repeated and of course, Madrid could even go one better and win the title again next year. Either way, this team will have to go down as one of the greatest ever.
Ronaldo, history maker again
Cristiano Ronaldo won the Champions League for the 5th time when Madrid beat Liverpool, this not only made him the first player to do so but also meant that he as an individual has won more Champions League titles than Barcelona have won as a club. This further cements Ronaldo's place as one of if not the greatest player ever to play the game.