Real Madrid midfielder Eduardo Camavinga had a mixed night in his side’s 1-1 draw with Manchester City in the first leg of the Champions League semi-final at the Bernabeu — but, despite a couple mistakes, he was overwhelmingly positive and was undoubtedly one of the best players on the pitch.
The 20-year-old Frenchman, who was deployed as a left-back by Carlo Ancelotti, made history by becoming the youngest semi-final assist provider in the competition’s history when he set up Vinícius Junior’s opener in the first half. He also showed his quality and composure on the ball, dribbling past opponents under pressure, carrying the ball up the field with unstoppable momentum, while also playing some neat passes.
Of course, the main part of Camavinga’s performance — apart from his impressive assist — was that he completely locked down Bernardo Silva in his 1v1 duel against the Portuguese.
Camavinga had three key passes, five tackles, and the most touches of anyone on his team. He also won nine of his 16 ground duels.
However, Camavinga also made a costly mistake that led to City’s equalizer, scored by Kevin De Bruyne in the second half. His pass to Rodrygo out of the back was intercepted, which allowed the ball to fall to De Bruyne, who unleashed a powerful shot from outside the box that beat Thibaut Courtois. Camavinga was visibly disappointed with his error and was consoled by his team-mates after the final whistle.
Despite his blunder, Camavinga was optimistic about Real Madrid’s chances of reaching the final ahead of the return leg at the Etihad Stadium next week. He told Canal Plus that he did not think the result was bad and that it was 50-50 between the two teams. He also praised City’s performance and said they were a very good team.
Camavinga, who joined Real Madrid from Rennes last summer for €31 million, has been a regular starter for Ancelotti this season, playing in various positions across the midfield as well as left-back. He has also begin to establish himself as a key player for France under Didier Deschamps, who also used him as a left-back during the World Cup.