2014 Chamions League Final, Real Madrid V Atlético de Madrid: Match Analysis

Alex Livesey

In terms of pure football and tactis, Atlético de Madrid defended really well against Real.

The match was really balanced. Neither team enjoyed a lot of opportunities but it's true that Madrid had some more through Bale's boots. Ancelotti went for Sami Khedira replacing Xabi Alonso and the squad lacked some flow moving the ball and creating plays. It was Ángel Di María the one player that knew what to do with the ball, and Luka Modric also showed his will to help the midfield.

But Benzema, Bale and Cristiano did not find any touches other than Tiago's turnovers who could've meant a goal for Real. Unluckily enough for los blancos, it was a disastrous mistake by Iker Casillas what put the first goal for Atlético in the scoreboard. The Spanish has never been known for being a good aerial goalkeeper and he proved that against such a strong team on set pieces. His mistake could have cost Real Madrid the title, and he will surely be thankful to Sergio Ramos after allowing the match to go to the extra time.

After Atlético scored, Ancelotti decided to introduce a double substitution. Isco and Marcelo came in for Khedira and Coentrao. Those two changes turn the match around during Real's 2-2 draw at the Calderón, and it worked the same way this time. Isco and Marcelo provided a playmaking ability that allowed Real Madrid to have more rhythm and flow with the ball. Furthermore, Atleti got tired and Simeone decided to defend even deeper. Some could say that Ramos' goal was a miracle -and it was-, but Real Madrid probably deserved to equalize earlier.

During the extra time, Real Madrid clearly edged Atlético. The were motivated and had a team that lost a chance at a Champions League in just two minutes. Still, Real was not risking as much. No team had a lot of chances for the first 15 minutes, but then Ángel Di María -who else?- dribbled two Atleti defenders away and shot with the outside of his boot. Courtois miraculously saved it but the ball fell right in Bale's head. The Welsh player has scored the Copa del Rey winning goal and also the Décima one. Not bad for a debut.

Then, a much easier job for Real Madrid. Marcelo found a lot of space through the left wing -he was playing upfront because Di María was about to get injured- and scored. Then, Cristiano got in the score sheet with a penalty kick. He's scored 17 goals this Champions League and should be winning another FIFA Ballon D'Or next year.

La Décima was there. The players started to celebrate a match that certainly was not easy to win.

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