On a wild night in Paris, Liverpool faced Champions League agony as Real Madrid won the title for the 14th time in club history thanks to Vinicius Junior’s second-half strike.
In the 59th minute, Brazilian winger Vinicius turned in Fede Valverde’s enticing low cross at the Stade de France, and Liverpool were unable to produce an equaliser as Jurgen Klopp’s team lost their second Champions League final in five seasons.
Jurgen Klopp’s side were looking to avenge their Champions League final defeat to the Spanish giants in Kyiv last season, but they were unable to produce a leveller after falling behind 1-0 to Federico Valverde’s low cross, which Vinicius converted at the far post (59).
Despite the chaotic circumstances, Liverpool maintained their focus, creating a flurry of chances and having 24 shots to Madrid’s four, but they were unable to beat Thibaut Courtois, who tipped a Sadio Mane effort onto the inside of the post in the first half and made a string of other outstanding saves.
Liverpool were attempting to win the competition for the seventh time, but their defeat means they will miss out on a treble after winning the Carabao Cup and FA Cup earlier this season, while Madrid celebrate yet another European triumph, their run to the final marked by a series of incredible comebacks.
Real Madrid boss Carlo Ancelotti described himself as “the record man” and hailed his side’s victory as he became the first manager to win the Champions League for a fourth time.
“I can’t believe it. We’ve had a fantastic season,” he said.
“We suffered a lot in the first half but in the end we deserved to win this competition.
“I am the record man. I had the luck to come here last year and found as usual a fantastic club with a really good squad with a lot of quality and mental character.
“The season was top.”
Courtois’ brilliant display
The Belgian goalkeeper was in sensational form at the Stade de France, keeping Liverpool at bay virtually single-handedly and making nine saves in the 90 minutes to help his team win their first European title.
He took a jab at his detractors after the game, saying that he is not regarded in England as much as he should be given his time with Chelsea.
”I think I said yesterday in the press conference that when Madrid goes to finals, we win them,” he said.
”I’m on the good side of history. I saw a lot of tweets coming my way today saying that I will be humbled, but I think it was the other way around.
”Today I needed to win a final for my career, for all the hard work – to put respect on my name because I don’t think I have a lot of respect in England.”