Bale taken off at half-time with Madrid two goals down

CHAMPIONS LEAGUE

Bale taken off at half-time with Madrid two goals down

Bale taken off at half-time with Madrid two goals down

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Zidane made the unusual decision of making two half-time substitutions, replacing Bale with Marco Asensio and Casemiro with Lucas Vázquez against Juventus.

Zinedine Zidane was forced to rethink his gameplan in tonight's Champions League quarter final return leg after his side found themselves two goals down to Juventus in the first 45 minutes - and with the Italians requiring just one goal to level the tie.

Juve target Madrid's full-backs

Gareth Bale, playing his 500th professional match, started up front alongside Cristiano as the Real Madrid coach plumped for a rhombus midfield formation to defend the three-goal advantage from last week's first leg in Turin. But Juve pulled a goal back after just 90 seconds this evening at the Bernabéu - a back post header from Mario Mandzukic inspired hope of a comeback for the visitors and they were back in the game after he found the net again at the far post just after the half hour.

System change

Zidane reacted by making the unusual decision of making two substitutions during the half-time interval. Bale was replaced by Marco Asensio and Lucas Vázquez took the place of Casemiro - both tactical decisions. Madrid regrouped to start the second half playing a 4-4-1-1 shape with Isco playing in the hole and Lucas and Asensio out wide. The change didn't have an immediate impact - in fact, it had the opposite effect as Juventus levelled the tie on the hour mark when Matuidi pounced on a defensive blunder to make it 0-3, and 3-3 on aggregate.

Zizou made his third and final substitution on 74 minutes, bringing on Mateo Kovacic for Luka Modric in the hope that his team could sneak a late goal and avoid the game going into extra-time when he would be unable to make any further changes.

 

 

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