Real Madrid tops Liverpool to win third straight Champions League title

Ryan Giggs says Gareth Bale could decide Champions League final

Real Madrid won their third Champions League in a row as they beat Liverpool 3-1 with Gareth Bale helping himself to two goals on the night.

Karim Benzema opened the scoring for Real Madrid after a horrendous clanger from Karius before Sadio Mane leveled things up not long after.

In the match held in Kiev's Olimpiyskiy Stadium, Egypt talisman Mohamed Salah was forced to exit the game in tears after suffering an apparent shoulder injury in the 31st minute.

The teams went in at half-time goalless, despite Benzema thinking he had given Real the lead shortly before the break when he turned the ball home after Karius saved a Ronaldo header, but the Portuguese striker had strayed offside.

The former Arsenal star says Los Blancos' shocking domestic form has player their former player hanging in by the skin of his teeth at the Bernabeu.

"It is always tough to choose your team for a final and it is never easy for a Coach, there are some very hard words to be said".

That even one of the greatest players of all-time reacted with such wonder at Bale's brilliance on the touchline was testament to a strike worthy of winning any final.

He could not score against Atletico in the 2016 final although he buried the final penalty in their shoot-out win, while he netted twice in last year's 4-1 win over Juventus in Cardiff.

Real Madrid's Zinedine Zidane may be fired if he loses tonight's game against Liverpool.

Such a strike deserved to be the victor, although it was his long-range shot that beat the embarrassed Karius in the 83rd minute that made sure of the victory.

For once in the final, it wasn't the Portuguese who made the difference for Real. "This is Real Madrid and, through hard work, we can get to where we are aiming". Five minutes earlier, Salah was pulled down to the grass by Sergio Ramos, resulting in a shoulder injury.

Though Ronaldo and Bale are both still world beaters in their own right, Liverpool will take as much as they can get, with Madrid expected to edge the encounter in Kiev.

Salah's exit gave Real an immediate lift because they had been nervous and edgy up until that point in the game.

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