69 mins: Crucial intervention from Ramos, who stretches as far as he can to prevent Robertson’s ball finding Mane and puts the ball behind for a corner. Milner whips it in but Navas punches it away.
Whose overhead kick was better?
— Goal (@goal) 26 de mayo de 2018
67 mins: STAT: Gareth Bale scored 2 Minutes 2 seconds after coming on. Quite an introduction.
66 mins: The best goal in a Champions League final since Zidane’s volley against Bayer Leverkusen in 2002. Sensational.
63 mins: Unbelievable! Bale has only just come off the bench and has provided a moment of sheer magic. Marcelo’s cross to the edge of the area finds the Wales ace, who acrobatically volleys over his head and leaves Karius with no chance. Absolutely remarkable.
GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAAAAAAL BALE!! THAT IS ABSOLUTELY OUTRAGEOUS!
60 mins: SAVE! Modric tees a ball through to Nacho down the right, who drills a low cross into Isco in the middle. The Spain midfielder takes one touch before firing at goal, forcing a decent stop from Karius.
STAT: Liverpool are the first team in history to see three players score 10+ goals in a single Champions League season (Salah 10, Firmino 10, Mané 10).
59 mins: Liverpool’s response has been magnificent and they’ve rekindled the bite that they showed in the opening stages of the match. They’re putting Real Madrid under significant pressure when they don’t have the ball and Los Blancos are finding it difficult to move into space.
57 mins: STAT: Benzema is the 1st French player to score in a Champions League final since Zinédine Zidane in 2002.
Simple but effective from Liverpool and Lovren put the ball on a plate for Mane. The perfect response from Liverpool.
55 mins: Liverpool are level! Firmino floats the corner into the middle and Lovren heads it into the danger zone, where Mane is there to tap home from close range. Game on!
GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAAAAAAL SADIO MANE!!! LIVERPOOL ARE BACK IN THE RACES!
51 mins: What on earth was that!? Karius easily collects a long ball forward and tries to quickly roll the ball out but Benzema sticks a toe out, diverting the ball into the net. What a howler!
48 mins: OFF THE BAR! A collection of errors from Liverpool opens up the Reds’ defence, with Lallana’s attempted clearance falling kindly for Isco. Karius is quick of his line but is beaten as the Spain ace lofts an attempt against the bar. A huge chance goes begging.
47 mins: The game has settled back into the same style we saw for the majority of the first period as Real Madrid dictate the tempo, while Liverpool sit back to soak the pressure.
46 mins: KICK-OFF! Back underway at the NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium in Kiev, will the game be decided within 90 minutes or will extra time be needed? It’s time to find out!
Liverpool idol Steven Gerrard to BT Sport: “It’s a huge blow for Mo individually and the effect it’s had on everyone out there has been really big. Madrid have grown in confidence since then. Liverpool were excellent in the first 20-25 minutes when Madrid couldn’t get out.”
STAT: Liverpool mustered nine shots in the first-half with Mohamed Salah on the pitch, and none after he was subbed off. This was the moment his Champions League dream was crushed.
Liverpool came out of the blocks flying, putting Real Madrid under significant pressure, but then saw their performance levels drop significantly. The absence of Salah will be a real kick in the teeth and Klopp faces a stern task to rally his troops at the break, especially as the game looks like it could be separated by just a single goal.
After a slow start, Real Madrid have controlled the tempo of the game but have struggled to create clear-cut opportunities. Barring the offside goal, Loris Karius hasn’t had too much to do and the Reds have found it fairly easy in defence.
Nothing to separate the two sides in Kiev following the first 45 minutes and the major talking points will be the forced departures for Mohamed Salah and Dani Carvajal. Karim Benzema did put the ball in the net for Real Madrid but was correctly flagged offside.
45+1: THREE minutes of added time to end the first half.
45 mins:‘ WIDE! Benzema is starting to become a key figure in the match and he plays a brilliant floating cross over the defence to Nacho, who volleys into the side netting.
43 mins: OFFSIDE! Real Madrid have the ball in the back of the net as Ronaldo sees a header superbly saved by Karius before the rebound was tapped home by Benzema. However, the flag is correctly raised on the far side.
41 mins: Still goalless, still not really any clear-cut chances created by either side. Many predicted a high-scoring affair but it seems that this game could be decided by just a single moment of magic.
39 mins: You have to feel for Salah and Carvajal, particularly in a World Cup year, and the Spain defender has been here before. Two years ago in the final against Atletico Madrid, he was also forced off injured in the first period.
36 mins: Now it’s Real Madrid’s turn for concern as Carvajal is down in tears and looks like he’ll also be forced off.
34 mins: STAT: The substituted Salah has scored 33% of Liverpool’s goals in all competitions this season before this match (44/134).
32 mins: Crucial period for Liverpool now until the interval as they need to ensure their heads don’t drop after losing Salah. The fans haven’t lost their voice though, booing Ramos for the part he played in Salah’s injury.
30 mins: Heartbreaking for Salah as he leaves the field in tears and has his place taken by Lallana.
29 mins: Really worrying signs for Salah again following a corner for Liverpool as the Egypt ace is down once again. It doesn’t look good at all.
27 mins: Massive sigh of relief as Salah is back on the field, though he doesn’t look fully comfortable just yet but is able to continue.
25 mins: Concern for Liverpool and indeed Egypt as Salah is down in a heap after a strong challenge from Ramos. He’s holding his shoulder and will receive treatment but he looks to be in some pain.
23 min: SAVE! Almost a moment to savour for Alexander-Arnold, who drives a fierce shot through the defence but cannot beat the Costa Rica goalkeeper.
22 min: Since all that early Liverpool pressure, it’s been Real Madrid controlling the tempo of the match. There’s still not been too many chances created in the game though, with the majority of the play coming in the central part of the field.
20 min: STAT: Cristiano Ronaldo is playing his 6th European Cup/Champions League final – only 3 players have appeared in more (8 Paolo Maldini, 8 Paco Gento, 7 Alfredo Di Stéfano).
18 min: Carvajal rather bizarrely puts the ball behind for a Liverpool corner after trying to play a long ball back to Ramos and it’s Salah who trots across to take. Navas fails to get there in the middle but Van Dijk can only header over the bar.
It’s not just in Kiev that Champions League fever has struck:
Watching at the Santiago Bernabéu. Eight big screens in the centre of the pitch and the stadium close to full (of madridistas, naturally). #UCLfinal #ChampionsLeagueFinal #RealMadrid pic.twitter.com/tv5snTqn0a
— Ben Hayward (@bghayward) 26 de mayo de 2018
16 min: First defensive mistake from Liverpool sees Ronaldo unleashed down the right and, despite the tight angle, he goes for goal. It whistles over the top of the bar and doesn’t provide any threat to Karius.
15 min: Ronaldo and Salah are the two players who’ve dominated the discussions this week but we’re yet to see much from either of the pair.
13 min: A better period of possession for Real Madrid, as they knock the ball around in midfield. Liverpool are more than happy to allow that to happen though, as they drop back to block any room to potentially break into.
11 min: Zidane’s side patient when they get the ball, whereas Liverpool are looking to immediately hit to exploit any space. With full-backs flying forward for both sides, it could be the wide areas where the best opportunities are crafted.
9 min: Real Madrid are struggling to cope with Liverpool’s high press at the moment and Zidane’s side cannot play their way out of the defence. It remains to be seen whether the Reds can make their early pressure count.
7 min: Varane again needing to intervene in defence as Firmino looks to thread a ball through to Mane and it looked dangerous, providing further encouragement for the English side.
6 min: A free-kick in a decent position for Liverpool is taken by Milner, who cuts it back to Salah but Modric is quick to close down the Egypt ace and block his attempt.
4 min: Liverpool stretching Real Madrid again as Alexander-Arnold plays a low cross into the box that Varane is forced to fire into touch. Klopp will be thrilled by the start from his side.
2 min: Real Madrid have the game’s first threatening attack, as Karius charges off his line to punch the ball away ahead of Isco. The offside flag is raised but the Germany stopper wasn’t to know.
1 min: We’re off! Liverpool straight onto the attack as the Champions League final gets underway.
1 minutes until KO: It’s almost time for the biggest club match of the season. The Real Madrid players have been through this so many times before, while for Liverpool it’s a chance to return to the summit of European football. Let’s hope for a cracking match!
10 minutes until KO: Liverpool have continued to tear through defences right until the end of the campaign, scoring 13 times in their last five matches in all competitions. However, that run includes a 1-0 defeat to Chelsea and a goalless draw with a Stoke City side that were relegated to the second-tier of English football.
Real Madrid’s inconsistent form towards the end of the season will provide encouragement to Liverpool, as Los Blancos have won just one of their last five in all competitions. However, no side has managed to stop Zidane’s side from scoring since Espanyol at the end of February.
20 minutes until KO: A couple of juicy stats for tonight’s final, courtesy of Opta:
11 – Real Madrid have the same starting XI as in the 2016-17 Champions League final; the first time that a team has started with the same 11 players in different European Cup/Champions League finals (excl. replays).
26 – Liverpool’s starting XI is the youngest (26 y 170 d) in an UCL final since Borussia Dortmund 2013 (25 y 255 d).
After finishing second in their group behind Tottenham, Real Madrid put Paris Saint-Germain to the sword in the Round of 16 and continued to face giants of Europe in their route to Kiev. A dramatic quarter-final against Juventus finished 4-3 in their favour following a dramatic late penalty from Ronaldo, then edging past Bayern Munich in the semi-finals to seal their spot in the Champions League final.
30 minutes until KO: STAT: Real Madrid name the same XI that started the final against Juventus last year, while nine of the players selected by Zidane also started against Atletico Madrid two years ago.
Jurgen Klopp also has a full squad to choose from and his line-up has no surprises. Milner returns to the side after missing the Premier League finale through injury, while Can returns to the bench and could play for the final time in Liverpool colours.
Zidane has a full strength Real Madrid to choose from and that means that Bale starts on the bench, with Isco playing behind Benzema and Ronaldo. Carvajal missed most of the semi-final through injury but is back in the side and will be in for a tough time up against Salah.
Liverpool subs: Simon Mignolet, Emre Can, Dominic Solanke, Ragnar Klavan, Adam Lallana, Nathaniel Clyne, Alberto Moreno.
Real Madrid subs: Kiko Casilla, Nacho, Mateo Kovacic, Lucas Vazquez, Marco Asensio, Theo Hernandez, Gareth Bale.
Liverpool XI: Loris Karius; Trent Alexander-Arnold, Dejan Lovren, Virgil van Dijk, Andrew Robertson; Georginio Wijnaldum, Jordan Henderson, James Milner; Mohamed Salah, Roberto Firmino, Sadio Mane.
Team News: Real Madrid XI: Keylor Navas; Dani Carvajal, Raphael Varane, Sergio Ramos, Marcelo; Luka Modric, Casemiro, Toni Kroos; Isco; Karim Benzema, Cristiano Ronaldo.
50 minutes until KO: Meanwhile, Liverpool have also been unable to compete with Manchester City domestically but their free-flowing attacking side has caught the eye on the continent. Last winning the Champions League 13 years ago, in remarkable circumstances, the Reds are seeking to dethrone Real Madrid to lift their sixth European Cup.
It’s been a season to forget domestically for Real Madrid, as they surrendered their LaLiga crown to Barcelona and also saw their eternal rivals lift the Copa Del Rey. In Europe though, despite some hiccups, Zinedine Zidane’s side have remained largely untouchable and remarkably enter the game seeking their third Champions League crown in a row – also boasting three successes in the past four seasons.
It’s the biggest game in the European football calendar and, once again, Real Madrid are fighting for the title. Already the most successful side in the competition’s history, they’re looking to strengthen their grip on the Champions League but face a Liverpool side who also boast strong European pedigree in their history.
1 hour until KO: Hello and welcome to our LIVE coverage of the Champions League final between Real Madrid and Liverpool at the NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium in Kiev!
Confirmed Team News
Real Madrid XI: Navas; Carvajal, Ramos, Varane, Marcelo; Casemiro, Modric, Kroos; Isco; Ronaldo, Benzema.
Liverpool XI: Karius; Alexander-Arnold, Van Dijk, Lovren, Robertson; Wijnaldum, Milner, Henderson; Salah, Mane, Firmino.
TV Channel & Live Stream
In the United States (US), the game can be watched live and on-demand with fuboTV (7-day free trial).
New users can sign up for a free seven-day trial of the live sports streaming service, which can be accessed via iOS, Android, Chromecast, Amazon Fire TV, Roku and Apple TV as well as on a web browser.
In the United Kingdom (UK), the game can be watched live on TV on BT Sport 2. It can also be streamed live online using the BT Sport app.
|UK TV channel||Online stream|
|BT Sport 2||BT Sport app|
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