Fans were treated to a quality encounter on Tuesday night as Real Madrid and Manchester City played out a 1-1 draw in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League semi-finals at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Two special strikes from Vinicius Jr and Kevin De Bruyne for their respective teams ensured that Real Madrid and Man City go into the second leg at the Etihad Stadium on equal footing with all to play for.
Both teams enjoyed spells of domination with most of Real Madrid’s threat coming through their goalscorer Vinicius Jr.
The Brazilian scored a stunning goal against the Cityzens, which means that he has now had a goal involvement in each of his last ten appearances across all competitions for the Merengues.
Furthermore, the Brazilian speedster became the third-youngest South American footballer to score 15 goals in the UEFA Champions League (22y 301d), with only Lionel Messi (21y 288d) and Rodrygo Goes (22y 99d) reaching the milestone before him.
While Vinicius was the star of the show, and rightly so, fellow youngster Eduardo Camavinga was not to be left behind. Starting as a makeshift left-back yet again, the 20-year-old left his mark on the game.
The Frenchman got the assist for Vinicius’ goal after making a tremendous run into the Man City half. Apart from that, no player won more duels than Camavinga (9). He also created 3 chances and made 7 recoveries.
While Real Madrid would have been happy to come away with a win from the first leg, a 1-1 result might not be too bad either, but there will be some concerns ahead of the second leg.
After all, Los Blancos have reached the Champions League final only twice after not winning the first leg of the semifinals. However, both those occasions came against Manchester City in 2016 and 2022.
Meanwhile, manager Carlo Ancelotti also celebrated a historic milestone on Tuesday night as he equalled Sir Alex Ferguson as the manager with the most games in Champions League history (190 each).
Brahim, Tchouameni start in a 4-3-1-2: How Real Madrid could lineup against Sevilla
Real Madrid are set to play hosts to Sevilla this evening, in what could prove to be a critical match in the context of the title race.
Although Los Blancos hold a formidable lead at the top of the table, the club are coming on the back of a disappointing result against Rayo Vallecano.
Dropping more points against Sevilla tonight could prove to be costly, especially with Barcelona and Girona breathing down their necks.
Potential Real Madrid lineup vs Sevilla
As Real Madrid approach this crucial game, coach Carlo Ancelotti has to make several arrangements, especially with so many players ruled out either due to injury or suspension.
Starting from the goalkeeper position, Thibaut Courtois remains out, which means Andriy Lunin should continue in between the sticks, ahead of the unhappy Kepa Arrizabalaga.
In the right-back position, Ancelotti is likely to opt for Lucas Vazquez, as Dani Carvajal is suspended after picking up two yellow cards in the last game.
On a bright note, though, Antonio Rudiger is back and should return to central defence. He will be accompanied by Nacho Fernandez at the heart of Real Madrid’s four-man backline.
Elsewhere in defence, Ferland Mendy should continue to start ahead of Fran Garcia in the left-back position.
Moving into midfield, Eduardo Camavinga has been ruled out due to suspension. However, Ancelotti does have a myriad of options in the middle of the park.
Aurelien Tchouameni should continue to operate in the number six position, just behind the two interior midfielders Toni Kroos and Federico Valverde.
Luka Modric is an option on the bench, should Ancelotti require more experience in the middle.
As for the attack, the Real Madrid frontline should be led by Brahim Diaz once again, even though he faces fierce competition from Joselu.
Vinicius Junior and Rodrygo, on the other hand, are guaranteed choices in the wide attacking spaces, though Ancelotti does have Arda Guler and Alvaro Rodriguez as potential alternatives.