Champions League final: Real Madrid beat Atletico

Real win a record 11th European Cup at the expense of city rivals Atletico Madrid 5-3 on penalties.

Cristiano Ronaldo of Real Madrid lifts the Champions League trophy
Real Madrid are the champions of Europe for a record 11th time [Getty Images]
Recent Champions League winners

2016 Real Madrid (Spain)
2015 Barcelona (Spain)
2014 Real Madrid (Spain)
2013 Bayern Munich (Germany)
2012 Chelsea (England)
2011 Barcelona (Spain)

Real Madrid produced a gritty display of football to beat city rivals Atletico Madrid 5-3 on penalties in the Champions League final.

Securing a record 11th European Cup in Milan’s San Siro stadium on Saturday, Real Madrid opened the scoring after 15 minutes when defender Sergio Ramos found the net.

Atletico struggled to break through Real’s defence in a rather dull first half, with 32-year-old striker Fernando Torres failing to complete a single pass.

And things worsened for Atletico early on in the second when Antoine Griezmann became the first player to miss a penalty in the Champions League final since Arjen Robben in 2012, after striking the crossbar.

But in the 79th minute Belgian Yannick Carrasco scored a goal from close range to put Atletico back in the game after a delightful cross from Juanfran.

Neither side was able to score again in either the 90 minutes or the 30 minutes of extra time, and the match went to penalties.

After successful spot-kicks for Real by Lucas Vazquez, Marcelo, Gareth Bale and Sergio Ramos; and for Atletico by Antoine Griezmann, Gabi and Saul, Juanfran’s penalty was saved by Navas before Ronaldo scored the decisive kick, giving them a 5-3 shoot-out victory.

Real coach Zinedine Zidane and Atletico counterpart Diego Simeone had kept to the script with no real surprises in their respective line-ups for the final.

French striker Karim Benzema spearheaded the hosts’ attack flanked by Cristiano Ronaldo and Welshman Gareth Bale, in front of a three-man midfield composed of Luka Modric, Casemiro and Toni Kroos.

Zidane, who won the trophy as a player with Real in 2002, won his first major trophy on Saturday in what is the Frenchman’s first season in charge at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium.

 The Champions league is Zidane's first trophy as coach of Real Madrid [Reuters]
The Champions league is Zidane’s first trophy as coach of Real Madrid [Reuters]
Source: Al Jazeera