A Gareth Bale stunner and two Karius mistakes hands Los Blancos 13th Champions League crown

A Gareth Bale stunner and two Karius mistakes hands Los Blancos 13th Champions League crown

brandon-sayer
Brandon Sayer
Real Madrid Navas, Carvajal (Nacho, min. 37), Varane, Ramos, Marcelo, Casemiro, Modric, Kroos, Isco (Bale, min. 61), Ronaldo, Benzema (Asensio, min. 89).
Liverpool Karius; Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson; Milner (Can, min. 83), Henderson, Wijnaldum; Salah (Lallana, min. 30), Firmino, Mane.
SCORE1-0, min. 51, Benzema. 1-1, min. 55, Mane. 2-1, min. 64, Bale. 3-1, min. 84, Bale.
REFEREEMilorad Mazic (SRB). Booked: Mane (min. 82).
INCIDENTSUefa Champions League final between Real Madrid and Liverpool, held at the NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium in Kiev.
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That though brings to an end to our Champions League final coverage here at Vavel. I hope you have enjoyed the game, I have been Brandon Sayer and until next time, have a good evening.

Madrid have done it again in Europe as they have now won their 13th Champions League crown after winning the final 3-1. Bale came off the bench to score two and Benzema scored the other. Mane scored the goal for Liverpool but they have just fallen short at the final hurdle.

Real Madrid have won the 2018 Champions League trophy for a third year in a row!

90+3' - The referee has blown his whistle to end the game. Real Madrid 3-1 Liverpool.

90' - The referee has decided to add on three minutes at the end of the second half.

89' - Real Madrid substitution: Benzema is replaced by Marco Asensio.

84' - Goal for Madrid. Bale scores to make it 3-1 to Madrid. It was another massive mistake from Karius as he fumbled Bale's long range strike into the back of the net.

83' - Liverpool substitution: Milner is replaced by Emre Can.

82' - Mane received the first yellow card of the game after fouling Ramos from behind.

82' - Benzema almost made it 3-1 to Madrid as he saw his volleyed effort from a great pass from Bale well-saved by Karius.

74' - What a fantastic last ditch tackle from Robertson to deny Ronaldo from making it 3-1 to Madrid. Ronaldo was played through on goal by a great pass from Bale but the left back got in to make the crucial tackle just as Ronaldo was about to score.

70' - Off the post! Mane comes extremely close to equalising again for Liverpool as his low drive from outside the box came back of the post with Navas beaten in nets.

64' - Goal for Madrid! Bale has put Madrid back into the lead. What a goal this was from Bale as his brilliant overhead kick went into the top corner of the net via a cross from Marcelo. What an unbelieveable goal, out of this world.

61' - Real Madrid substitution: Isco is replaced by Gareth Bale.

60' - Isco comes close to putting Madrid back in the lead as his shot from a great pass from Nacho saw Karius have to make a very good save.

55' - Goal for Liverpool! Mane has equalised for the Reds. Liverpool responded extremely well after going behind and have equalised after Lovren met a corner with his head and Mane steered the ball into the net. What a game we have now.

51' - Goal for Madrid! Benzema has given Madrid the lead in bizarre circumstances. Karius received the ball after a ball forward and he wanted to throw the ball out quickly but Benzema intercepted the ball and it went into the back of the net. Now lets see what Liverpool are made off.

48' - Off the crossbar! Madrid have started the second half much better and they almost took the lead after Liverpool failed to clear the ball which fell to Isco in the box who done everything right but the midfielder saw his shot come back off the crossbar.

46' - The referee blows his whistle to begin the second half in Kiev. Game on!

A final that had a big build up has failed to deliver so far as both sides have struggled to create too many clear cut chances. The big incident that did happen in the first half was the injury to Salah who left the field in tears clutching his shoulder after a tangle with Ramos. Surely their will be goals in the second half? Stay tuned to find out as we bring you the second half live in a few minutes time!

45+3' - The referee has blown his whistle for half-time. Real Madrid 0-0 Liverpool.

45' - The referee has decided to add on three minutes at the end of the first half.

43' - Goal no offside! Madrid put the ball into the back via Benzema but it was ruled out for offside. The chance came when a great cross from Nacho found Ronaldo unmarked in the box but he saw his header well-saved and from the rebound, Benzema put the ball into the net but it was correctly ruled out for offside.

37' - Now it's time for Real madrid to suffer a setback as Dani Carvjal has had to leave the field with an ankle injury and had to be replaced by Nacho.

30' - Unfortunately for Liverpool, their talisman Mohammed Salah has had to leave the field due to a shoulder injury and has been replaced by Adam Lallana. The Egyptian winger left the field in tears, lets hope it not as serius as he thinks.

23' - Liverpool spring into action and forced Navas into a very good save as a drilled shot from Arnold went through a few Madrid defenders forced the keeper to be instintive to get down and keep it out of the net.

15' - Finally Madrid create their first real chance of the game as a good pass from Carvajal found Ronaldo in space with the striker running in the box before hitting his shot well over the bar. Much better from the men in white after the reds started really well.

7' - Liverpool have started the game really well by pressing the Madrid defence high up the pitch and that is allowing them too get into good positions but some good last ditch defending from Madrid has stopped the men in red from creating any decent chances.

1' - The referee blows his whistle to begin the game. Game on!

Liverpool substitutes: Mignolet, Clyne, Klavan, Moreno, Lallana, Can, Solanke.

Real Madrid substitutes: Casilla, Nacho, Bale, Theo, Vasquez, Asensio, Kovacic.

Liverpool starting XI: Karius; Alexander-Arnold, Lovren, Van Dijk, Robertson; Milner, Henderson, Wijnaldum; Salah, Firmino, Mane.

Real Madrid starting XI: Navas, Carvajal, Varane, Ramos, Marcelo, Casemiro, Modric, Kroos, Isco, Ronaldo, Benzema.

The team news from Kiev is in. Stay tuned as we bring you the all important news next!!

It's interesting that neither team has managed to match their European success with a title challenge this season, bowing to the superb Barcelona and Manchester City teams respectively. Real (76) finished on just a point more (75) than Liverpool in the league, losing six games to the Reds' five.

One of Zidane's most interesting comments was about the difficulty of team selection for such a game, quipping; “This is the worst moment for a coach, deciding the team because some won’t put a jersey on and some will be on the bench and not play at all. But that’s my responsibility. That’s my job.”

Manager's Klopp and Zidane both had their say on Friday ahead of the final, Klopp joking about the lack of respect that the media seems to have for the pair's tactical skills. “If people think Zidane has no tactical knowledge - because people think the same about me - it would be really funny if two managers in the final had no clue about tactics. What would that say about the game?" said Klopp.

The rest of Liverpool's front-line shouldn't be forgotten though, with Roberto Firmino also on 10 European goals this season, whilst Sadio Mane has nine to his name. Putting that in comparison, Madrid's second-top UCL scorer (Benzema) has just four. The Reds have bagged an astonishing 46 goals on their road to the final, more than any side in history. How many more will they score tonight?

Two men guaranteed to start are Cristiano Ronaldo and Mohamed Salah, arguably the two sharpest marksmen in European football at the moment. They've plundered an astonishing 25 Champions League goals between them this season, Ronaldo on 15 and Salah 10. Salah however bagged more league goals (32) than Ronaldo (26).

Real Madrid's team selection is a little more complicated, mainly because they've got everyone fit. Gareth Bale's return to fitness and form in recent weeks has seen him push for a place, possibly ahead of Karim Benzema. The most likely Madrid line-up looks to be; Navas; Carvajal, Varane, Ramos, Marcelo; Casemiro, Kroos, Modric; Isco, Bale, Ronaldo.

We're a little way off kick-off yet but it's unlikely that there'll be any surprises on the Liverpool team sheet. Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, Joe Gomez and Joel Matip all had their seasons curtailed by injury, whilst Emre Can and Adam Lallana have been welcomed back to training recently but won't be fit enough to start. We're expecting Liverpool to go; Karius; Alexander-Arnold, Van Dijk, Lovren, Robertson; Henderson, Milner, Wijnaldum; Salah, Mane, Firmino.

Whilst Liverpool's route to the final may have been better for the headline writers, nobody can argue against the idea that Real's has been trickier, the Spanish side reaching their fourth final in five years. They only came second in their group, out-done by Tottenham Hotspur, but have showed their real talents later in the competition, knocking PSG, Juventus and Bayern Munich - all champions of their respective domestic leagues - out of Europe. 

The Reds wouldn't lose a game until the semi-final stage, beating Hoffenheim home and away before progressing through a group of Sevilla, Maribor and Spartak Moscow. Porto were hammered 5-0 in the last 16 before Jurgen Klopp's men summoned their best football to out-do Manchester City 5-1 on aggregate in the last eight. The semi-final stage pitted them up against Barcelona-conquering Roma, Liverpool putting themselves into the final thanks to a commanding first leg performance that saw them 5-0 up at one point, the tie somehow finishing 7-6 on aggregate. 

Liverpool have been doing their best to smash up the prediction pieces about how they'd struggle in Europe, with a fairytale campaign bringing them all the way to Kiev. Starting with a play-off in Hoffenheim and ending here, it's been quite a ride. 

What a game of football we have to look forward to. Not a David and Goliath clash, but one which pits the back-to-back winners against a team that hadn't even been in the knockout stages since 2009.

Good evening to one and all, and welcome to VAVEL UK's live minute-by-minute commentary of tonight's UEFA Champions League final, Real Madrid vs Liverpool in Kiev! We're Brandon Sayer and Oliver Emmerson and we'll be taking you through the evening as the two teams battle to be crowned the best team in European football. Kick-off at Kiev's Olympic Stadium is set for 19:45 BST, so strap in and get ready for what's expected to be a wild night of football at the highest level. 

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