Real Madrid forward Vinicius Jr. scored twice as they punished a sloppy Liverpool side to win 3-1 at home in Tuesday’s Champions League quarter final first leg.
The 20-year-old Brazilian fired the 13-times European champions into the lead in the 27th minute at the Alfredo di Stefano stadium after controlling a long diagonal pass from Toni Kroos from his own half which flummoxed the Liverpool defence.
Marco Asensio put the hosts further at ease by scoring in the 35th after a Kroos pass again caused havoc among the visiting backline but Liverpool looked more settled after the interval and a scrappy Mohamed Salah strike pulled them back into contention early in the second half.
But they failed to build on their momentum and Vinicius struck again in the 63rd minute to repeat the scoreline of the 2018 Champions League final and put Zinedine Zidane’s side in pole position for next week’s second leg at Anfield.
Meanwhile, Manchester City’s Phil Foden grabbed a last-minute winner as they beat Borussia Dortmund 2-1 in their Champions League quarter final first leg on Tuesday after Marco Reus had netted a late equaliser for the German visitors.
City took a 19th minute lead with a classic counter-attacking move finished off by Kevin De Bruyne after Dortmund’s former Liverpool midfielder Emre Can had given the ball away on the halfway line.
Pep Guardiola’s City side then had a penalty awarded but correctly overturned by VAR after a challenge by Can on Rodri and Dortmund, buoyed by the reprieve, found some attacking verve.
Romanian referee Ovidiu Hategan was at the centre of things again when City keeper Ederson hesitated and Dortmund’s Jude Bellingham nipped in and slotted the ball into the net but the 17-year-old was harshly ruled to have fouled the Brazilian.
Ederson came to City’s rescue early in the second half, saving from Erling Haaland with an outstretched foot as the German side continued to cause City problems.
City had several chances to extend their lead and paid the price for their uncharacteristic lack of precision in front of goal when Dortmund struck six minutes before the end.
Haaland’s clever pass on the half-turn found Marco Reus, who had timed his run perfectly and beat Ederson with a composed finish.