Real Madrid and Chelsea parted in a draw this Tuesday evening in the semi-final first leg of the Champions League (1-1). The English club dominated in the first half with a very good N’Golo Kanté, but Karim Benzema equalized with a superb sequence.
Since they were deprived of the Super League, Real Madrid and Chelsea had to refocus this Tuesday night on the good old Champions League. And start arguing in Spain for a ticket to the grand final. Ball lovers will not complain, since the two clubs, despite a certain technical waste – also the fault of a very English weather -, offered a fairly open meeting.
This semi-final first leg, no one won it (1-1). Real, who started backwards, could well have lost her, but Karim Benzema, like very, very often this season, saved him.
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Chelsea did not know how to kill the meeting
For a whole half, and even a little longer, the shock indeed resembled a presentation on the usefulness of a quality number 9 within a team. With an example, and a counterexample. The counterexample was Chelsea. Perfectly in place at kickoff, the formation of Thomas Tuchel disrupted the Madrid recovery by pressing in particular his trio Modric-Casemiro-Kroos, and by throwing himself quickly once the ball recovered, with a very good N’Golo Kanté.
It is also very logical that Pulisic opened the scoring around the quarter of an hour of play, taking advantage of a nice opening from Rüdiger to get ahead of Courtois and finish calmly (1-0, 14th). Problem: Timo Werner, the “star” striker of the Blues at 53 million euros, wasted at least three clear chances because of a bad call, a bad control, or a bad shot … As in the 10th minute of play, when he shot Courtois when he was totally alone within six meters.
Benzema in the middle of the storm
Opposite, Real suffered, Real suffered, and showed little or nothing. But Real had Benzema. A real goalscorer, in good form. Under a downpour, the French attacker first woke his people by sending a left missile, as powerful as suddenly, on the post of Mendy (23rd). An appetizer, before the chef’s dish: a sumptuous sequence of head control, volleying in pivot in the London area to shoot the opposing goalkeeper and equalize (1-1, 29th).
This 71st goal in C1 allowed the former Lyonnais to equal the legend Raul and become with his Spanish elder 4th best director in the history of the competition. He also helped to change the face of the meeting. Undoubtedly cooled, perhaps caught up with the stake too, Chelsea was more cautious, more wait-and-see after the break. Real therefore set foot on the ball, played higher, and more calmly. Without getting a hot second hand, unfortunately, despite the entry into play of Eden Hazard. It will be decided next Wednesday, at Stamford Bridge.