Real Madrid vs Shakhtar Donetsk: Zidane's men kick-off Champions League with 3-2 defeat

Real Madrid vs Shakhtar Donetsk: Zidane's men kick-off Champions League with 3-2 defeat

- Real Madrid were stunned in their Champions League opener by Shakhtar Donetsk

- Two second-half goals from Luka Modric and Vinicius Junior were not enough to help them avoid defeat

- Los Blancos will now face Spanish League rivals Barcelona this weekend at the Nou Camp

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Underdogs Shakhtar Donetsk on Wednesday evening, October 21, stunned Real Madrid 3-2 in a thrilling Champions League clash played at Santiago Bernabeu.

Shakhtar came into the Group B clash without a number of their key players after coronavirus ripped through their squad in the run-up to the fixture.

However, that did not stop them from taking the game to strong favourites Real Madrid away from home.

Despite dominating the early exchanges of the encounter, it was Shakhtar who headed into the break leading - all thanks to their clinical finishes earlier on.

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Real had the best chances to break the deadlock before the half-hour mark, with Marcelo and Rodrygi all finding plenty of joy going forward.

Real Madrid vs Shakhtar Donetsk: Zidane's men kick-off Champions League with 3-2 defeat
Real Madrid vs Shakhtar Donetsk: Thibaut Courtois watching as the ball crossed his goal line. Photo by Diego Souto.
Source: Getty Images

But it was Shakhtar who took the lead, with Tete scoring the opener in the 28th minute after drilling a shot past Courtois into the bottom corner.

Raphael Varane went on to direct the ball into his own net four minutes later to help Shakhtar double the lead.

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Manor Solomon made it 3-0 just minutes to the break, with the Shakhtar star cleanly dispatching the ball past Courtois after he was set up by Tete.

It was the introduction of Vinicius Junior that proved critical, with the youngster nearly inspiring Los Blancos to a stunning comeback.

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This was after Luka Modric had pulled one back for Madrid in the 55th minute before Vinicius made it 3-2 soon after a sensational solo run.

Efforts by the home side to pull a fight back proved futile, with the visitors holding on to claim all the three points.

The result saw Shakhtar momentarily move top of Group B pending the outcome of the other group fixture pitting Bayern Monchengladbach and Inter Milan.

Legit.ng earlier reported that Ajax vs Liverpool had all the sparks of what a UEFA Champions League fixture should be, but the English champions ran away with all three points, no thanks to a Nicolas Tagliafico own-goal.

The match started brightly as both teams looked good playing from end-to-end in the early exchanges to set up a highly entertaining introduction to the game.

The first real attempt came in the 19th minute when a short corner was whipped into the box by Dusan Tadic, but Martinez, who was unmarked at the far post put a tame header straight at goalkeeper Adrian.

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