Real Madrid 1 Tottenham Hotspur 1: Spurs hold their own in draw with Los Merengues
PUBLISHED: 21:41 17 October 2017
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UEFA Champions League Group H: Real Madrid 1 (Ronaldo 43p) Tottenham Hotspur 1 (Varane o.g. 28)
Tottenham Hotspur took a point on their trip to Real Madrid in the UEFA Champions League after their clash with the two-time defending champions ended 1-1.
Spurs took the lead through an own goal midway through the first period, but Cristiano Ronaldo score a penalty late in the half for the hosts to send the sides into the break level.
Both sides created plenty of chances in the second half, but were unable to rattle the net for what would have been a winner.
Spurs made two changes for the trip to the Spanish capital, with Moussa Sissoko and Fernando Llorente coming in for the suspended Dele Alli and Son Heung-Min respectively.
With Gareth Bale out injured, there was only one ex-Tottenham man in the Real starting XI, with Luka Modric lining up in central midfield.
The north Londoners were fortunate not to fall behind in the fifth minute when Ronaldo nodded an Achraf Hakimi cross against the post.
The ball rebounded kindly into the path of Karim Benzema with the goal at his mercy, but the France international somehow put his first-time shot wide.
From there, Spurs continued to see little of the ball, though were able to restrict the Spanish side to half chances.
That was until the 17th minute when Ronaldo fashioned room for a shot on the edge of the box, but saw his effort trickle wide of the far post.
Despite seeing little of the ball, Spurs nearly took the lead against the run of play in the 19th minute.
Christian Eriksen delivered a delightful corner in from the right that found Harry Kane, but Tottenham’s talisman could only head straight at Real stopper Keylor Navas.
Spurs had been slowly growing into the game and took the lead in the 28th minute, albeit in slightly fortuitous circumstances.
A quick break down the right led to Serge Aurier whipping the ball in, with Raphael Varane diverting it into his own net.
A minute later, Aurier could have netted himself, drawing a fine save from Navas with an effort from 20 yards.
With 13 minutes left in the half, Spurs gave Isco too much room inside the box, with the Spain international drawing a fine save from Hugo Lloris.
Real continued to press in the minutes that followed, with Marcelo and Benzema going close to levelling.
The hosts did eventually restore parity in the 43rd minute when Ronaldo converted a penalty.
Aurier fouled Toni Kroos after the German midfielder broke into the box, with Ronaldo slotting the resulting spot kick past Lloris.
It was a goal that ensured the sides went into half time level following a compelling first half at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Nine minutes into the second half, Lloris produced a stunning save to prevent Spurs from falling behind, saving a Benzema header with his feet at point blank range.
In the 62nd minute, the French stopper produced another fine save to tip a powerful Ronaldo effort from 12 yards over the bar.
The resulting corner found its way to Isco on the edge of the box, whose deflected effort looked goalbound until Lloris caught the ball.
Tottenham’s goal was living a charmed life, with Ronaldo again testing Lloris in the 64th minute following a fine solo run.
Spurs, though, nearly regained the lead with 19 minutes remaining when Llorente found Kane in the box, only for Navas to push the England international’s shot behind for corner that came to nothing.
Two minutes later, the north Londoners went close again, this time with Eriksen drawing the save from Navas.
The remaining moments passed with little incident as the two sides remain locked on points at the top of Group H.
Spurs’ attention now switches to Liverpool, who they host in the Premier League on Sunday.
Real (4-3-3): Navas; Hakimi, Ramos, Varane, Marcelo; Kroos, Casemiro, Modric; Isco (Vazquez 87), Benzema (Asensio 76), Ronaldo.
Subs: Casilla, Nacho, Hernandez, M Llorente, Ceballos.
Tottenham (5-3-2): Lloris; Aurier, Alderweireld, Dier, Sanchez, Vertonghen; Sissoko (Son 89), Winks, Eriksen; F Llorente (Rose 80), Kane.
Subs: Vorm, Trippier, Foyth, Walker-Peters, Georgiou.
Referee: Szymon Marciniak.