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Real Madrid 2-1 Sporting Lisbon report and goals: Champions League 2016

Real Madrid beat Sporting Lisbon with two late goals from Ronaldo and Morata to win their 1st game in Group F in the Champions League, Wednesday 14 September 2016.
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Real Madrid's Portuguese forward Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates after scoring the equalizer during the UEFA Champions League football match Real Madrid CF vs Sporting CP at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium in Madrid on September 14, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / GE

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Real Madrid 2-1 Sporting Lisbon Report

Real Madrid left it late to beat Sporting Lisbon tonight in an entertaining and surprisingly evenly-matched game at the Santiago Bernabéu. Trailing until the very end, Zidane's side snatched victory from the jaws of defeat with an 89th minute free-kick from Cristiano against his former side and a 94th minute header from substitute Alvaro Morata to get their Champions League defence off to a winning start. 

Cristiano struck with an 89th minute free kick to equalize
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Cristiano struck with an 89th minute free kick to equalizeDIARIO AS

Sporting went into tonight as the clear underdogs but were the better side for much of the game. All the best chances in the first half fell to Jorge Jesus' side - Bas Dost was agonisingly close to getting on the end of dangerman Gelson's pass across the box on the half hour mark - and it was they who drew first blood at the start of the second half through Bruno Cesar who took advantage of Sergio Ramos' failure to clear on the edge of the box to fire low past Kiko Casilla.

Bruno Cesar had put Sporting ahead just after half time
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Bruno Cesar had put Sporting ahead just after half timeDIARIO AS

The home side looked uncomfortable in possession and unimaginative for long periods as Sporting duo William Carvalho and Adrien Silva bossed the midfield. Bale took a knock at the end of the first half after a challenge from Coates and was replaced soon after half-time by Lucas Vázquez. But as they so often do, Madrid kept pushing and pushing and found a way through. Zidane will be delighted with the three points but will have a lot to think about. The BBC, starting together for the first time this season, looked rusty. And, of course, the full extent of Bale's injury remains to be seen. Questions will be asked but, for now, all that matters is that Real Madrid's European campaign is off to a winning start.

Full time: Real Madrid 2 - 1 Sporting Lisbon

Peeeeep! And that's full time at the Bernabéu! Incredible scenes. This match looked dead and buried with 2 minutes to go but Madrid have won it. Sporting will be absolutely distraught. The visitors looked the better side for much of the game and Madrid struggled to create chances. But, as they so often do at home, Zidane's men found a way through late in the game. The reigning champions left it late but they get their Champions League defence off to a winning start!

Min 94 | Goooooooooooooooool!!!!! Gooooooooooooool!!! Morata!!!!!!!! Madrid have brought this back from the brink to win it in incredible style. James gets the ball on the edge of the box and fires in a cross that's met by Alvaro Morata. His header goes straight at Rui Patricio but the keeper can't keep it out and it hits the back of the net. he doesn't score many, but they're not half important! 

Min 92 | Sporting make a final change - Joel Campbell on for Bryan Ruiz.

Min 90 | The fourth official signals that there'll be 4 minutes of stoppage time. Time for a winner? Jorge Jesus is in the stands with his head bowed. 

Min 88 | Goooooooooooooool!!!!!!! Goooooooooool!!!! Cristianooooooooooooo!!!!! Cristiano steps up and flights the free kick into the top-right corner. Patricio, fully outstretched, gets his hand to it but he can't keep it out. Real Madrid equalize with just a minute to go!

Min 87 | Free kick to Madrid on the edge of the box. Cristiano is brought down by Elias and the home side have a real chance here.

Min 82 | Uyyyyyy! Cristiano had the equalizer on a plate there but he rattles his shot against the bar! The ball ends up in the net but the flag is up. And not long after, Carvajal flies in to latch onto the end of a James cross but he volleys just over. 

Min 80 | 10 minutes to go and the crowd are edgy. Chants of 'Madrid' sound out around the Bernabéu but the home side just can't break down Sporting, who have 10 men behind the ball right now. 

Min 79 | Madrid keep controlling possession (58% to 42%) but they're not capitalizing. Morata is fed through but he's flagged offside. 

Min 76 | Uyyyy! Chance for Madrid as Carvajal gets on the end of a cross by Cristiano but he fires just wide. Real Madrid make their final change: James on for Kroos.

Min 75 | Now the linesman takes a tumble after being bashed into by Bas Dost. He's up quite quickly though - no one looks particularly concerned. 

Min 74 | Kroos goes in the book after a midfield scuffle and he's not happy. 

Min 72 | Another change for Sporting. Adrien Silva, who was booked in the first half, trots off to be replaced by Elías, who used to play for Atletico Madrid.

Min 71 | Madrid come close as Morata just fails to get on the end of Modric cross from the right-hand side. The crowd like what they see and raise the decibal level to spur on the team. Madrid continue to pressure and force Coates to slice a cross in away for a corner. Casemiro comes flying and gets on the end of the long cross but his header goes just high. Flag was up anyway. 

Min 69 | Sporting make a change, with Markovic coming on for Gelson. That's the same Markovic that has disppeared from view at Liverpool since signing from Sporting's cross-city rivals Benfica. Markovic is, incidentally, the king of silly squad numbers. He wore number 50 at Liverpool and today he's wearing number 3. He's a striker...

Min 67 | That free kick is the Welshman's last act on the pitch as he's replaced by Lucas Vázquez. Zidane makes a second change too: Morata on for Benzema. The Frenchman has looked rather anonymous this evening. 

Min 66 | Bale takes a tumble on the very ege of the box under pressure from Zeegelaar and after some delay the referee signals for a free kick. Bale wants a penalty but the replays show it was outside the box. Bale steps up to take the free kick but his tame attempt flies over the bar.

Min 63 | Sporting go close again! That man Gelson bursts past Marcelo and fires in a cross but Bas Dost's touch in front of goal manages to send the ball backwards. 

Min 62 | Bale is played through down the right flank by Carvajal and he races forward before squaring to Cristiano on the edge of the box but the linesman's flag is up. 

Min 61 | Morata and James have joined Lucás Vázquez to warm up along the touchline. Could a change be coming? Madrid look like they need an injection of new ideas here. 

Min 58 | Sporting coach Jorge Jesus has been sent to the stands! It looked as if he was arguing with the fourth official and he's now watching the game away from his technical area. 

Min 56 | Another yellow for Sporting this time for William Carvalho who brings down Luka Modric as he bursts foward from midfield. Both of Sporting's central midfielders are in the book now. Sergio Ramos uses the break to rush off and change his shirt. 

Min 55 | Cristiano goes down in the box amid calls for a penalty but it looks like Coates got the ball cleanly and the referee waves play on. 

Min 53 | The Sporting fans are in good voice here at the Bernabéu. Their side have looked confident and they come forward again with some intricate passing only for Dani Carvajal to storm in and tackle Gelson on the edge of the box. Bruno Cesar fires in another and forces a save from Casilla. Madrid look nervy.

Min 49 | A lot of the home fans were still making their way down to their seats and they'll have missed the Sporting goal. What did Zidane tell his team at half-time? Probably something like 'make sure you don't concede.'

Min 47 | Goooooooooool for Sporting!!!! Bruno Cesar recovers the ball just inside the Real Madrid box after Sergio Ramos and Luka Modric fail to clear and fires a shot low down and out of the reach of Kiko Casilla's outstretched arm. Sporting lead!

Min 46 | Lucas Vázquez is out warming up, probably as a precaution. Zidane will be keeping an eye on how Bale comes out for this second half after going off for treatment at the end of the first. 

Peeeeeeep! Our referee for the night Paolo Tagliavento gets us back underway.

And that's half time at the Santiago Bernabéu. 0-0 the score between Real Madrid and Sporting Lisbon. The home side haven't looked particularly comfortable on the ball in the opening half; Sporting, on other hand, have. The midfield duo of William Carvalho and Adrien Silva have been excellent and they've used their possession well to carve open a few good chances but haven't capitalised. Real Madrid will be particularly concerned about how rusty the BBC have looked playing together for the first time this season. 

Min 45 | Bale is back on, but he's moving a little gingerly.

Min 42 | Bale wins a free kick on the edge of the box after a challenge from Coates. The Welshman stays down and the stretcher comes on but he slowly gets to his feet and shuffles off the pitch. Cristiano steps up to take the free kick and tries to curl it into the top corner but it flies over the crossbar.  

Min 40 | Excellent work by Gareth Bale as he tracks back and stops a Sporting counter-attack inside the Madrid half. Sporting recover and launch another counter-attack but Adrien can only fire into the hands of Kiko Casilla. 

Min 38 | Roles are reversed as Adrien brings down Casemiro, but this time the Sporting player goes in the book, much to his chagrin. 

Min 36 | Casemiro swipes at Adrien Silva from behind and gives away a free kick around half way between the centre circle and the penalty area. Jorge Jesus thrashes around in his technical area - that's not his first foul and he wants a booking. No card. Sporting loop in the free kick but it's cleared.

Min 32 | Uyyyy! Sporting go close! Gelson turns Marcelo quickly on the edge of the area and fires a cross right across goal but it's just out of the reach of Bas Dost. The visitors were close to going 1-0 up there.

Min 30 | Half an hour gone. Real Madrid haven't managed to carve out a clear-cut chance yet and Sporting have looked comfortable. The visitors have had some joy down the right flank and Gelson's pace has looked dangerous.

Min 27 | Uyyyyyy! Cristiano fires away a shot from outside the box and forces Rui Patricio to tip the ball over the bar for a corner. 

Min 26 | 57% possession for Real Madrid so far but they've struggled to create a clear chance against this well-organized Sporting side. 

Min 24 | Sporting force a corner from Segio Ramos as they break away on the counter. They take it short but the Real Madrid defence are on them like flies and the chance peters out. 

Min 22 | Cristiano goes down again on the edge of the box but the referee waves play on. He's not happy with that and whistles sound out around the Bernabéu but it was probably the right decision.

Min 19 | Cristiano goes down in a shoulder-to-shoulder challenge on the counter attack and gets up, wincing. He's holding his hand but it doesn't look as it he's in too much pain.

Min 16 | Bruno Cesar is brought down clumsily by Casemiro in the centre circle. Free kick but no card. 

Min 12 | Excellent work once again from Bale, this time down the left. He flicks it over Gelson's head and loops in a cross which is just about headed behind by the Sporting defence. The corner results in a quick session of penalty area head tennis, but it's eventually cleared. Better from Madrid though.

Min 10 | Madrid threaten! Gareth Bale fights his way into the Sporting box from the right flank and gets a shot (or was it a cross?) away but it goes straight into Rui Patricio's welcoming hands. 

Min 7 | The Portuguese side have looked comfortable so far and come close again though Gelson who fires a low shot towards goal, forcing a good save from Casilla. Sporting have definitely had the better chances so far.

Min 4 | Sporting captain Adrien Silva goes down in a heap after an aerial challenge from Casemiro. Free kick. Silva winces as he gets up but he's fine from the looks of things.

Min 1 | Sporting go close almost immediately! Bruno Cesar finds some space on the edge of the box and has time to pick his spot but fires just wide of Casilla's right-hand post.

Peeeeeeep! And we're off. Madrid in their classic all-white strip; Sporting look like they've been dipped in yellow highlighter ink.

2 mins to kick-off | Huge cheers from the Sporting fans as Cristiano's name is read out. 

5 mins to kick-off | Both sides come into tonight's match in top form. Real Madrid have won 15 LaLiga games on the trot, while Sporting have won 13. The two best ongoing win streaks in Europe!

Real Madrid - Sporting Lisbon team news

Real Madrid starting XI:

Casilla, Carvajal, Ramos, Varane, Marcelo, Casemiro, Modric, Kroos, Bale, Benzema & Cristiano

Sporting Lisbon starting XI:

Rui Patrício, João Pereira, Coates, Semedo, Marvin, William, Adrien, Gelson, Bruno César, Bryan Ruiz & Bas Dost

Preview of Real Madrid vs Sporting Lisbon: Matchday 1 Champions League 

Real Madrid start their European adventure tonight knowing that another incredible run to the finish line in Cardiff will make them the first team since Milan at the end of the 1980s to defend the title. First up for Los Blancos is a team that holds special feelings for the star man at the Bernabeú, Sporting Lisbon. It was in Lisbon that Cristiano Ronaldo started his professional career.

Real Madrid

The Bernabéu welcomes back Champions League football at a time when manager Zidane has some selection challenges. In the first three league games the Frenchman has used almost all of his 23-man squad and will have to decide who takes to the field tonight to ensure the three points while not risking injuries to those who have recently returned from injury.

All eyes will be on Cristiano as he faces his old club and after a good showing on Saturday he is expected to start. With Benzema also making a successful appearance as substitute against Osasuna tonight could see the return of the BBC to the starting XI. Out of the team squad are Isco and Asensio - giving an idea of the squad depth - but returning to their dangerous full-back roles will be Marcelo and Carvajal. Whether Varane or Pepe starts alongside Sergio Ramos will be determined later. 

Sporting Lisbon

The Portuguese outfit arrive with some silverware winners in their ranks. Cristiano and Pepe will be very familiar with Rui Patricio and William Carvahlo who lined-up alongside them during Portugal's Euro 2016 victory in the summer. The team had a confidence boosting 3-0 win over Moreirense at the weekend and currently sit top of their league - like their opponents tonight - with four wins from four and a postive goal difference of seven.

Those who don't know much about the Primeira may still recognise some familiar faces with the likes of Coates (Liverpool/Sunderland), Bryan Ruiz (Fulham), Markovic (Liverpool) and Joel Campbell (Arsenal) all set to feature. It will be interesting to see how manager Jorge Jesús lines up against their toughest opponent so far this season after already adopting 4-2-3-1 and 4-4-2 formations in recent games, with the latter likely to give them more stability to prevent the threats against Zidane's trusted 4-3-3. 

Possible starting XIs: Real Madrid vs Sporting Lisbon

Who we think Zinedine Zidane and Jorge Jesús will choose tonight:

Real Madrid: Casilla, Carvajal, Varane, Ramos, Marcelo, Casemiro, Modric, Kroos, Bale, Cristiano Ronaldo, Benzema.

Sporting Lisbon: Rui Patricio, Pereira, Coates, Semedo, Zeegelaar, Adrien Silva, Carvalho, Marins, Bruno César, Bryan Ruiz, Dost.

Build up to Real Madrid vs Sporting Lisbon

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