Wednesday’s Champion’s League games were nothing short of spectacular, first up we had Real Madrid vs Napoli. We also had German champions Bayern Munich vs Arsenal.
Real Madrid vs Napoli
This was a brilliant game inside the Santiago Bernabeau. Zinedine Zidane, led his Galacticos into this one against Serie A side Napoli. The away scored an early away goal when Lorenzo Insigne stroke an ambitious effort into the top corner. However, it didn’t take long for the home side to reply in kind. Dani Carvajal put in a peach of a cross, for the big Frenchman Karim Benzema to head home the equaliser from 6 yards making the game 1-1. The visitors started the second half slowly and the holders paid them pay. Portugal superstar Cristiano Ronaldo, got past Koulibaly before finding the German Toni Kroos who coolly side-footed a wonderful shot past Spanish goalkeeper Pepe Reina to give the hosts a 2-1 lead. This goal was the first of a second half blitz from Real Madrid as they struck again 5 minutes later. The ball broke to Brazilian Casemiro, who hit a thunderous first time volley from a whole 30 yards out straight into the top corner, to give the hosts a 3-1 lead to take to Naples. In a game full of Golazos, this one leaves me eagerly awaiting the second leg. I fancy the holders to keep hold of this lead or even extend the aggregate score even further.
Bayern Munich vs Arsenal
This was the second game of the evening and given Arsenal’s terrible recent record in the Knockout Stages of the competition, you can’t expect the average fan to be filled with optimism. The hosts started on the front after a beautiful goal, from Dutchman Arjen Robben made the game 1-0. Robben cut inside on the left flank and finding the top corner. On the half hour mark, the away side won a crucial penalty. The initial penalty from Sanchez was saved from Neuer but the Chilean pounced to score the rebound getting an away goal to make it 1-1. The Gunners held their own until the interval with both sides heading in to the break with the scores level. Shortly, after the start of the second half Arsenal lost Captain and key man Laurent Koscielny. With the skipper off the field, the German Champions went on a rampage scoring 3 goals inside 10 minutes. This all started in the 53rd minute as Robert Lewandowski scored his only goal of the game with a header to make it 2-1 to Bayern. Spanish midfielder Thiago then grabbed a seven minute brace leaving the score 4-1. The first of Thiago’s goals, came in the 56th minute when the Spaniard fire home hard and low past David Ospina. Thiago beat Ospina again minutes later, this time from outside the box as the ball took a deflection on its way into the back of the net. The final goal of the game came from substitute Muller who came on in place of another goal scorer Lewandowski. A brilliant team goal was finished off by the German after he found the bottom corner to finish the game 5-1.
An eventful night full of beautiful goals. I fully expect Real Madrid to finish the job off in the second leg in Italy. However, we have seen some spectacular come backs from Arsenal in the Champions League in the past. Although this is a very strong Bayern Munich side and 5-1 just seems an insurmountable feat for the Gunners.