Berlin, Oct 26 (IANS) RB Leipzig consolidated the second spot in UEFA Champions League Group F after stunning Real Madrid 3-2 on Matchday 5 on Tuesday evening with goals from Josko Gvardiol, Christopher Nkunku and Timo Werner.
Real grabbed a bright start on the road as Aurelien Tchouameni headed the side netting following a free kick with five minutes played. However, the opener was scored at the other end, as Real goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois parried Andre Silva’s attempt into the path of Gvardiol, who nodded home the rebound from close range in the 13th minute.
Nkunku had the chance to double the lead moments later, but the Frenchman couldn’t find the open goal from tight angle.
Nkunku atoned for his error in the 18th minute, when he drilled a loose ball from inside the box into the roof of the net to make it 2-0 following a corner.
Real showed signs of life in the 35th minute when Rodrygo tested Leipzig goalkeeper Janis Blaswich, reports Xinhua. The visitors eventually halved the deficit before halftime, after Marco Asensio’s pinpoint cross found Vinicius Jr, who headed home off the inside of the post.
The Red Bulls focused on counterattacks and should have extended their lead after the restart, but Nkunku snatched at a chance in the 71st minute.
Real remained dangerous in fast breaks but lacked in accuracy, as Vinicius Jr pulled wide from a promising position in the 79th minute.
Leipzig put the result beyond doubt and completed a counter through Werner, who poked home Mohamed Simakan’s square pass two minutes later.
Real were able to reduce the deficit in the dying seconds of the match after Rodrygo converted a penalty, but couldn’t find an equaliser.
“It is always great to snatch a 3-2 win over Real. We played very well in the first half. Especially until the 25th minute. We knew that Real would turn up, but we defended well. I think we deserved the victory,” said Leipzig head coach Marco Rose.
Elsewhere, Borussia Dortmund booked their berth in the last 16 after a goalless draw with Manchester City in Group G. City had a golden chance to take all three points but Dortmund goalkeeper Gregor Kobel saved Riyad Mahrez’s penalty.