Bale on bench for Real Madrid in Champions League final

Lawrence Cooper
May 27, 2018

Bale is not certain to start for Real Madrid in Saturday's showdown in Kiev, despite scoring five goals in four La Liga games for the reigning European champions.

Ronaldo's team-mate Gareth Bale also confirmed he is considering his Real Madrid future.

This was not to be Salah's night, with Real allowing Zinedine Zidane to become the first coach ever to win the Champions League three years in a row.

That change is rather surprisingly in attack, given how good the combination of Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema and Isco has been in their path to Kiev.

The former Arsenal star says Los Blancos' shocking domestic form has player their former player hanging in by the skin of his teeth at the Bernabeu.

He tried to play on but lasted just one more minute before succumbing to the pain and leaving the field in tears.

Sadio Mane found a swift response for Liverpool but Bale, benched frequently by Zinedine Zidane on the big occasions this term, had other ideas.

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He added: "It would be unbelievable if Real Madrid do it".

Between them, they've scored in various Champions League finals and been the difference.

The Welshman had been tipped to feature in the Real starting line-up but in the end was left out for Isco - just as he had been in the final win over Juventus previous year - before making an emphatic impact as a substitute.

Karius had no chance on that occasion but seven minutes from time he pushed the Welshman's speculative drive tamely into his net, confirming Madrid as European champions for the 13th time in their illustrious history, while Jurgen Klopp suffered more final heartbreak. In contrast to Karius, the underrated Keylor Navas made a series of important saves and catches to keep Liverpool out before Real scored. "This is Real Madrid and, through hard work, we can get to where we are aiming".

Jan Oblak at Atletico Madrid would fit the bill and give Liverpool one of the top five keepers in the world, while the Roma keeper Alisson Becker is another who would be an upgrade.

"They can cause us problems, we know that".

The game exploded into life in the second half, when Real took the lead in freakish fashion.

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In retaliation, police officials resorted to lathi-charge and tear gas to disperse the crowd to contain the situation. Jayakumar said in a televised address that it had been "unavoidable" for police to fire on protesters.

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