The UEFA Champions League final between Real Madrid and Liverpool drew curtains as the Spanish giants defeated the Reds to lift their third consecutive title on Saturday.
The mega event started with controversies and injuries, which left fans of both the clubs in tatters. An early controversial tussle between Sergio Ramos and Mohamed Salah ended with the Egyptian leaving the pitch in tears, which eventually halved Liverpool’s chances to humble the Los Merengues. The tackle by Real Madrid’s skipper triggered a huge social media outrage but that is a different story all together.
After Salah’s injury, the Champions League final witnessed Real Madrid’s Dani Carvajal leave the pitch with pain and tears. The injury which the right back suffered was not a result of any controversial tackle but sheer bad luck and the 26-year-old right back was substituted for the versatile Nacho Fernandez.
The injuries did impact the game on a tactical point of view but both the teams still fought their hearts out for the ultimate prize in club football.
We take a look at top 3 players who left their mark in the NSC Olimpiyskiy Stadium, Kiev and earned plaudits from the fans all over the world.
#3 Gareth Bale
Gareth Bale had witnessed a topsy-turvy season with injuries and Zidane preferring other players over the dynamic forward, however, the Welsh turned his form around by scoring goals regularly for Real Madrid in the final stages of La Liga. That was not enough for manager Zinedine Zidane to put his name in the starting line-up in the final, though.
The Welsh wizard came on in the second half and won the game for the Spanish club single-handedly. His insane overhead kick restored Madrid’s lead just after his introduction.
The final goal by the 28-year-old was a powerful strike but Liverpool’s Lorius Karius should have dealt with it easily. That does not take anything away from the former Tottenham Hotspur man’s effort, however. He changed the dynamism of the match when Zizou’s men were looking clueless in the final third and left fans from all over the world awestruck.
The impact that Bale made was simply outrageous and his game-changing efforts will be talked about for years to come.