Vinicius Junior Real Madrid 2022-23Getty Images

Vinicius Junior - welcome to the world-class club! Winners & losers as Real Madrid run riot to leave Liverpool on the cusp of Champions League elimination

Vinicius Junior delivered a performance for the ages as Real Madrid swatted Liverpool aside in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie. The winger scored twice to claw Madrid back from an early deficit, and ran riot as his side opened up a convincing lead, eventually starring in a resounding 5-2 win at Anfield.

Liverpool broke the deadlock early, with Darwin Nunez meeting Mohamed Salah's cross with a delightful flick at the near post. Salah then made it two within 15 minutes, finishing into an open net after a Thibaut Courtois blunder.

Vinicius, though, responded shortly after, curling a ball past a helpless Alisson to pull Madrid within one with less than a quarter of the game played. He then struck again 15 minutes later, deflecting Alisson's loose pass into an empty net to cap off a breathless first half.

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He was involved again following the break, drawing a lazy foul from a clumsy Joe Gomez, with the free-kick leading to Eder Militao heading Madrid into the lead.

Madrid stayed ahead, adding two goals more before the 65th minute, with Karim Benzema getting in on the action to cap off a famous victory.

It was the return of the fabled Madrid magic in the Champions League, with the European Cup holders showing exactly why they cannot be written off in their favourite competition.

Liverpool now need to win by three at Santiago Bernabeu. If Vini is on it, that seems very unlikely.

GOAL breaks down the winners & losers from a memorable night on Merseyside...