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Real Madrid v Chelsea Live Commentary, 27/04/2021

1 - 1
K. Benzema (29)
C. Pulisic (14)
Estadio Alfredo Di Stéfano


Thanks for joining our commentary this evening. Until next time, goodbye.
Both sides are in domestic action before the second leg on 5 May at Stamford Bridge. Real Madrid host Osasuna in LaLiga on Saturday, while Chelsea are also at home on the same day against Fulham in the Premier League.
It's honours even after the first leg of the Champions League semi-final clash between Real Madrid and Chelsea. Christian Pulisic put the Blues ahead with a composed finish, but Karim Benzema equalised with a volley from close range. Neither side could add to the scoreline in the second half as the quality dipped after the break. Thomas Tuchel and his team will be satisfied with their efforts, notching a crucial away goal that could be decisive in the return leg next week.
K. Benzema
Real Madrid
90' + 2' Zidane makes the curious decision to withdraw Benzema for the closing stages. Rodrygo replaces the Frenchman.
90' There will be three minutes of added time.
Yellow Card
Real Madrid
89' Odriozola takes out Rudiger on a marauding run down the left flank. He goes into the book for the home side.
88' CLOSE! Kroos lifts a cross into the box from the resulting corner and Varane is afforded a free header at goal. However, it glances off the Frenchman's head and smashes into Chilwell's face before trickling wide of the right post.
88' WIDE! Kroos takes possession 25 yards out and he pulls the trigger on a right-footed effort. It takes a massive deflection off Kante and travels wide of the left post.
87' Hazard sends Odriozola down the right flank and he tries to steer a low delivery into the box, but Kante makes a sliding block before Chilwell clears the danger.
86' Hazard takes possession down the right flank and angles a cross into the middle, but Christensen has his positioning spot on, allowing him to head it away.
84' Ziyech tries to bundle his way past Casemiro in the box, but the midfielder holds firm to fend off the winger as the ball trickles back to Courtois.
81' Madrid have not been able to break down the Chelsea defence in the second half. Asensio epitomises their struggles as he caught offside as he moves too soon to latch on to Nacho's pass.
79' SAVE! Ziyech lines up a strike from the resulting free-kick, and he curls his effort over the wall, but Courtois makes a comfortable save at his near post.
R. Varane
Yellow Card
Real Madrid
78' Varane goes into the book for his challenge on Havertz.
78' Havertz latches on to a throughball from Jorginho and advances to the right edge of the Madrid box. Varane sticks out a leg and brings down the German, handing Chelsea a free-kick in a dangerous position.
Real Madrid
77' Odriozola makes his way on to the field to replace Carvajal down the right flank.
Real Madrid
77' Marcelo is replaced on the left flank by Asensio in an attacking move from Zidane.
76' BLOCKS! Madrid try to force the issue in the final third. Benzema latches on to a loose ball on the edge of the box following a corner, but his effort is blocked by Kante. Marcelo takes over, only to see his left-footed drive repelled by a wall of blue shirts.
75' Benzema wins a free-kick as he draws a foul from Rudiger. Thiago Silva has to be alert to prevent Varane turning in the left-inside channel, diverting the ball behind for a corner.
74' Militao cannot prevent the ball from travelling out for a corner after a loose touch. The initial cross from James is cleared as far as Ziyech, who guides it back towards the middle, but Courtois claims the ball under his bar.
71' Mount sends Ziyech down the left flank and the winger sends a dangerous low ball across the face of goal. However, Havertz is on his heels in the Madrid box and the ball trickles behind for a goal-kick.
70' Real Madrid have only recorded one shot on target after 70 minutes of this game (for Benzema's goal).
69' BLOCK! Chilwell turns the ball into the path of Mount in the Madrid box, but his left-footed strike is blocked by Varane.
R. James
66' James replaces Azpilicueta at right wing-back for the visitors.
H. Ziyech
C. Pulisic
66' Pulisic is withdrawn after a telling contribution. Ziyech replaces his team-mate in the final third.
K. Havertz
T. Werner
66' Havertz comes on to replace Werner in the final third for the visitors. The German was not clinical enough tonight for Tuchel's men.
E. Hazard
Vinícius Júnior
Real Madrid
66' Vinicius has had a tough evening and is withdrawn by Zidane. Hazard enters the action against his former club. He would love to haunt the Blues here.
Yellow Card
Real Madrid
65' Marcelo commits a cynical challenge to halt Pulisic on the charge and is duly booked by the referee.
63' Casemiro and Benzema attempt to combine on the edge of the box, but Vinicius cannot keep the move alive, allowing the Blues to quell the danger.
61' Marcelo tries to release Vinicius down the left flank, but the forward moves a fraction too soon and is caught offside. Vinicius has had a quiet evening.
T. Kroos
Yellow Card
Real Madrid
60' Kroos brings down Kante from behind on the right flank and he goes into the book. Chelsea have a free-kick in a useful position.
58' Azpilicueta angles a ball over the top down the left flank, but Carvajal eases him away from the ball. The referee is not interested in the full-back's appeal for a foul.
55' Modric tries to thread the needle to release Vinicius in the box, but Christensen makes an important intervention to clear the danger.
52' The game is still open for both teams. Madrid have not been at their best this evening, but Benzema has been a constant threat. Chelsea look dangerous on the break through Werner's speed over the top. It's set up for an interesting half.
50' OVER! Benzema collects on the edge of the Chelsea box and angles a strike on his right foot towards goal. However, he gets under the ball and loops his attempt well over the bar. Not the Frenchman's best effort.
48' BLOCK! Militao is on the spot for Madrid to block a goalbound effort from Werner. Marcelo loses possession on the edge of his own box and Kante threads a pass through to Werner, but his right-footed effort is diverted behind for a corner by the Brazilian.
46' Mount surges down the left flank and has space to deliver a cross, but he angles the ball straight into the hands of Courtois.
46' We're back underway at the Alfredo Di Stefano.
Thomas Tuchel will be the happier of the two managers after Pulisic's away goal, but the Blues were pegged back by Benzema, who struck the post before levelling. Chelsea are in a decent position, but cannot be too content until the final whistle blows.
It's all square at the break in the first leg Champions League semi-final clash between Real Madrid and Chelsea. The Blues enjoyed a fast start to the game went ahead through Christian Pulisic. However, Los Blancos battled back and equalised through a close-range effort from Karim Benzema. Both teams face an important 45 minutes in their bid to reach the final of the competition.
45' There will be one minute of added time.
43' Chelsea will be satisfied with their efforts in the first half, but Tuchel will be a tad disappointed to have conceded a cheap goal from a set-piece given his side's recent strong performances at the back.
41' WIDE! Werner has space to run down the right flank and he bursts into the box before firing at goal. However, the German cannot place his effort on target.
39' Benzema has scored six goals in the Champions League this season - his most in a single campaign since 2014-15 (also 6).
C. Pulisic
Yellow Card
38' Pulisic brings down Marcelo with a lunge from behind and goes into the book.
37' Thiago Silva is afforded room to break foward and he takes on a strike from distance that takes a deflection off Kroos and travels wide.
35' Azpilicueta makes good progress down the right flank and whips a cross into the box. Werner rises at the back post, but he fails to connect with a header.
32' WIDE! Kroos is afforded room in the final third, but he places his right-footed strike wide of the right post.
30' Benzema has scored his 71st goal in the UEFA Champions League, making him the joint-fourth top scorer in the competition’s history (along with Raúl). Only Cristiano Ronaldo, Lionel Messi and Robert Lewandowski have now scored more than the Frenchman.
Éder Militão
Real Madrid
29' Militao rises highest in the box to flick Casemiro's header into a dangerous area, allowing Benzema to convert.
K. Benzema
Real Madrid
29' GOALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!!!!!!! BENZEMA LEVELS FOR MADRID!!!! 1-1!!!! The Spanish side are level on the night as Benzema converts on the volley. Marcelo whips a dangerous cross to the back post for Casemiro to rise and head across goal. Militao helps it into the path of the awaiting Benzema, who reacts and steers an effort past Mendy with power into the back of the net.
Vinícius Júnior
Yellow Card
Real Madrid
27' Vinicius goes into the book for a poor challenge on Pulisic.
25' WIDE! Pulisic charges at the Madrid defence and offloads towards Chilwell, but he places a right-footed strike just wide of the target.
23' OFF THE POST! Benzema almost levels the scores for the home side. He runs at the Chelsea defence before launching a left-footed strike from 25 yards at goal that cannons off the right post and bounces wide.
21' Mount tries to send a throughball into the path of Werner, but the forward is caught offside.
18' Madrid have been rocked by a brilliant start to the contest from the Blues. Zidane and his men have their work cut out to get back into this one.
16' Pulisic is the first American player to score in a UEFA Champions League semi-final, and one of only five Americans overall to score in the knockout stages of the competition.
A. Rüdiger
14' Rudiger delivers a precise ball over the top for Pulisic to chase and score with a composed strike.
C. Pulisic
14' GOALLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!!!! PULISIC FIRES CHELSEA AHEAD!!!!! 1-0!!!! The Blues take a deserved lead through the American. Rudiger floats a sublime ball over the top for Pulisic to chase. He collects in the left-inside channel and is afforded space and time on the box. He takes it round Courtois before hammering a right-footed strike through two players on the line into the back of the net. 
12' Chilwell makes a burst forward down the left flank and he tries to put in a low cross. Carvajal has to slide to divert it behind for a corner.
11' The Blues press forward down the right flank and Azpilicueta fizzes in a low delivery that just evades the boot of Werner on the stretch at the back post.
10' Werner continues to probe in the final third and he finds space for a low drive that Courtois gathers with ease.
10' SAVE! Courtois produces a fine stop with his feet to deny Werner from six yards. Chelsea break on the counter down the left flank and Mount supplies a cross to the right-inside channel. Pulisic directs a header across the face of goal for Werner to attack, but his strike on the half-volley is saved by the Madrid keeper. The Chelsea forward should have hit the back of the net.
9' Marcelo works an offload into the left-inside channel for Benzema to chase. He tries to work a cross into the middle, but Thiago Silva takes the pace off the delivery and allows Mendy to gather.
7' Madrid have been on the back foot in the early stages and have not been able to establish control of the contest.
5' Werner leads a surge forward for the Blues, but his offload fails to find Pulisic in stride and the American can only poke a pass to Azpilicueta. The Spaniard lifts a cross into the box that finds Chilwell, but the attack peters out.
2' Pulisic tries to latch on to a ball over the top from Chilwell, but the ball just evades the American in the Madrid box.
1' We're underway at the Alfredo Di Stefano.
Real Madrid have faced Chelsea more often than any other side in all competitions without winning in their entire history, failing in all three matches (D1 L2).
Tuchel has named an unchanged team from his side that beat West Ham last time out. The Blues operate with a front three of Werner, who scored against the Hammers, alongside Mount and Pulisic. Rudiger, Thiago Silva and Christensen remain in a back three with Kante and Jorginho sitting in front of the line. 
Madrid have made three changes to their side that drew against Betis last time out. Marcelo, Kroos and Vinicius all come into the side this evening as Isco, Rodrygo and Asensio drop to the bench. Zidane alters the shape of his side to operate with a back three, allowing Benzema to lead the line with Vinicius in support. Former Chelsea man Hazard is among the substitutes.
CHELSEA SUBS: Kepa Arrizabalaga, Marcos Alonso, Tammy Abraham, Willy Caballero, Kurt Zouma, Olivier Giroud, Callum Hudson-Odoi, Hakim Ziyech, Billy Gilmour, Reece James, Kai Havertz, Emerson.
CHELSEA (3-4-3): Edouard Mendy; Andreas Christensen, Thiago Silva, Antonio Rudiger; Cesar Azpilicueta, N'Golo Kante, Jorginho, Ben Chilwell; Mason Mount, Christian Pulisic, Timo Werner.
REAL MADRID SUBS: Eden Hazard, Marco Asensio, Andriy Lunin, Alvaro Odriozola, Isco, Mariano Diaz, Rodrygo Silva, Diego Altube, Sergio Arribas, Antonio Blanco, Miguel Gutierrez.
REAL MADRID (3-5-2): Thibaut Courtois; Eder Militao, Raphael Varane, Nacho Fernandez; Daniel Carvajal, Toni Kroos, Casemiro, Luka Modric, Marcelo; Karim Benzema, Vinicius Junior.
Chelsea were solid in their quarter-final win over Porto after doing the heavy lifting in the away leg. The Blues defeated the Portuguese outfit 2-0 on the road before slipping to a late defeat at Stamford Bridge in the return fixture. However, it was enough to book a last-four berth. Thomas Tuchel's men put forward a fine performance last time out to beat West Ham United on the road in the Premier League. They will need to be even better this evening to take a positive result back home next week.
Real Madrid saw off the threat of Liverpool in the last round of the Champions League and now must overcome another English outfit to reach the final for a 17th time. Zinedine Zidane's men were not at their best at the weekend, playing out a goalless draw against Real Betis at home that left them two points off the pace of Atletico Madrid at the top of LaLiga. Los Blancos need to rediscover their best to capitalise on home advantage against the Blues tonight.
Good evening and welcome to the live commentary of the first leg Champions League semi-final clash between Real Madrid and Chelsea at the Alfredo Di Stefano.