The win at the Santiago Bernabeu stadium puts the 14-time European champion in the driver’s seat ahead of the second leg at Chelsea’s Stamford Bridge on April 18.
Atap- in by Karim Benzema and a important strike by cover Marco Asensio earned European champion Real Madrid a 2- 0 palm over 10- man Chelsea in its titleholders League quarter-final, first leg in the Spanish capital on Wednesday.
Benzema, the scourge of Chelsea at the same stage of the competition last season, converted from point blank range in the 21st nanosecond when Kepa Arrizabalaga saved from Vinicius Junior but could only touch the ball in the direction of the Frenchman.
It was Benzema’s 90th title holders League thing with the last 11 all coming against English clubs.
Chelsea– under caretaker trainer Frank Lampard after a dismal season so far- went near to scoring in the first half but Joao Felix and Raheem Sterling were baffled by Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois playing against his former club.
The Londoners ’ chances of getting back into the game suffered a major reversal in the 59th nanosecond when Ben Chilwell was shown a straight red card for bringing down Rodrygo with a haul of the Brazilian’s shirt when he was bearing down on thing.
Asensio had been on the field for just three twinkles when he was fed by Vinicius on the edge of the box and the Spain transnational drilled in a low shot that went through the legs of Chelsea protector Wesley Fofana and beyond Kepa’s dive.
The palm at the Santiago Bernabeu colosseum puts the 14- time European champion in the motorist’s seat ahead of the alternate leg at Stamford Bridge on April 18.
Benzema, who scored a chapeau- trick in London last time before getting another in Madrid in a 5- 4 aggregate suspenser, could have effectively seen off Chelsea in added time at the end of the alternate half when he headed over with the thing at his mercy after Kepa could only punch the ball as far as him.
Chelsea cover Mason Mount also came near to a pivotal thing for the Blues when he turned and shot in the penalty area but former platoon mate Antonio Rudiger, also on off the bench, contended in to block.
In the end, the Londoners failed to scored for a fourth match in a row- three of them in the Premier League- their longest barren run since 1993.
Lampard- Chelsea’s top goal scorer who returned to Stamford Bridge for a alternate spell as trainer until the end of the season after Graham Potter was fired this month- embraced Madrid master Carlo Ancelotti, himself an ex-Chelsea director, at the final whoosh.
“They ’re a veritably good platoon but we’ve to believe, ” Lampard told BT Sport, pertaining to coming week’s return leg in London. Know More Latest Football News…