Player Ratings: Real Madrid 3-1 Liverpool
Two goals from Vinicius and another from Asensio see Real Madrid earn a comfortable lead heading into next Wednesday’s second leg of this season’s Champions League Quarter-final.
Real Madrid started off the game very strongly, creating chances and testing Allison from the get go. Around the 30-minute mark, Toni Kroos managed to find Vinicius with a sensational ball over the top of Liverpool’s defence which the Brazilian controlled brilliantly before tucking it away nicely to give Los Blancos the lead. Marco Asensio then doubled the lead after Trent Alexander-Arnold headed a Toni Kroos pass into the Spaniard’s path.
Mohamed Salah managed to get a goal back for the reds just after half-time to get Liverpool back into the game. Soon after that, Real Madrid restored their two goal lead with Vinicius netting his second of the night to give the home team a comfortable lead heading into the second leg.
A huge win for the 13 time Champions League winners, especially given the absence of both Sergio Ramos and Raphael Varane in the heart of defence. These are our player ratings:
Thibaut Courtois: 7/10
A relatively quite night for the Belgian which many did not expect. Courtois played a big role in helping Real Madrid start counterattacks which really damaged Liverpool. Not much he could do about Liverpool’s goal.
Lucas Vazquez: 8/10
Caught napping for Liverpool’s goal with the Spaniard playing Salah onside for the English club’s opener. Despite that mistake, Lucas put in a good shift not allowing Mane any opportunities at all down the right wing.
Eder Militao: 9/10
With Ramos and Varane both missing, many expected the worst tonight… well everyone except Militao. The Brazilian put in a sensational performance at the back, arguably his best in a Real Madrid shirt.
You wouldn’t think Ramos was missing after watching that performance. Nacho bossed it at the back and allowed Liverpool little to no chances. A captain like performance.
Ferland Mendy: 8/10
Whether he plays in a back three or a back four, you can rely on Mendy to put in a solid performance every time. The Frenchman put in a solid shift with the highlight of his night being the excellent sliding tackle to deny Mane a tap in.
Luka Modric: 9/10
We’ve gotten to the point where we know Modric will put in a near perfect performance every match he plays. The Croatian dictated the tempo of the game alongside Toni Kroos and Casemiro. He went on to assist Vinicius for Real Madrid’s third goal of the night. Outstanding.
A tireless performance from Casemiro. The Brazilian was always on hand to cut out any loose balls in and around his area. Casemiro provided Modric and Kroos the license to create chances and hurt Liverpool further up the field.
Toni Kroos: 10/10
Midfield displays don’t get any better than what we saw from Kroos against Liverpool. The German had Liverpool’s midfield chasing shadows all night. Assisted Vinicius’ opener with a ridiculous pass over Liverpool’s defence who could do nothing but watch in awe. Class personified.
Marco Asensio: 8/10
Scored Real Madrid’s second to make it 4 goals in his last 4 matches. The Spaniard doubled Real Madrid’s lead in the first half with a beautiful lobbed finish. Marco did have opportunities to score 1 or 2 more but he couldn’t find the right touches to finish.
Karim Benzema: 8/10
On a night where Real Madrid were so dominant, Benzema had a relatively quite night. Despite not scoring or creating many chances, Karim’s passing and movement on and off the ball was excellent.
Vinicius Jr: 10/10
Simply unstoppable! Vinicius’ best performance since joining Real Madrid, no question about it. The Brazilian scored two goals and terrorised Liverpool’s defence all night. Sensational.
Fede Valverde: 7/10 – Came on to replace Asensio. The Uruguayan added energy and fresh legs to help Real Madrid close out the game.
Rodrygo: 6/10 – Came on to replace Vinicius with not much left on the clock.