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Real Madrid vs Bayern Munich, Champions League 2014: Great Result for Madrid (1-0)

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With Gareth Bale starting the game on the bench, Real Madrid gave too much away but rescued a win

Paul Gilham

Once again, the Bernabeu showed up and the crowd helped building a great atmosphere. Bayern tried to cool that atmosphere by having a lot of the possession, especially during the first 10 minutes in which Real Madrid did not create a single chance. The first one came from Cristiano Ronaldo's boots. He found Coentrao on Boateng's back and the Portuguese left back just had to cross it to Benzema, who gave Real the lead.

After that, Real Madrid conceded a lot of space through Bayern's wings. But luckily enough for them, Robben and Ribery did not have a great first half and could not find Mandzukic on the box. The gameplan was similar to the one Ancelotti's men used against Barcelona, but Bayern's wings and aerial game on the box is far more dangerous than Barça's, so it was risky. The German side enjoyed a lot of corner kicks, but again Pepe, Ramos and the rest of the team prevented Guardiola's players from getting the ball properly.

The first half concluded with Real Madrid having two great scoring opportunities, but the players' poor decision-making was crucial. On the first one, Cristiano Ronaldo could not make contact with the ball well and sent his shot over the bar, while Di Maria tried to go for a fancy assist when he had Isco wide open on the left wing. You have to convert your chances in this competition, and these chances could be decisive.

The second half was much better, even though the squad only managed to keep that 1-0 lead and didn't create much danger. Bayern could not get out of their half of the pitch thanks to a brilliant pressing by the forwards whenever Neuer had to play the ball. And again, Ramos and Pepe were just dominant in the box. Only Gotze found a ball wide open, but his shot was saved by Casillas, who did not have to work otherwise.

The display was brilliant, and the team probably deserved to score another goal and travel to Munich with a much more comfortable lead. But anyway, Bayern will have to beat Real 2-0 to advance to the Final, and a Real Madrid goal would force them to score three. It is a very good result for Ancelotti and his men, and they should take care of business next Tuesday with Bale and Ronaldo ready to start.

Pepe had to leave the game and further information of that suspected hip injury should be released soon.