Live Commentary: Galatasaray (3)3-2(5) Real Madrid - as it happened

Real Madrid's Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates after scoring against Galatasaray on April 3, 2013
© AP Photos
Sports Mole's live coverage of the Champions League quarter-final second leg between Galatasaray and Real Madrid that has a thrilling finale.

Real Madrid booked their place in the Champions League semi-final courtesy of a 5-3 aggregate win over Galatasaray, despite losing 3-2 in the quarter-final second leg this evening.

Cristiano Ronaldo scored an early goal to seemingly kill the tie off, but Galatasaray enjoyed a mini-revival in the second half.

Emmanuel Eboue kicked things off with a stunning strike before Wesley Sneijder and Didider Drogba made it 3-1 on the night, leaving the hosts needing two more goals to qualify.

However, Ronaldo added his second of the game late on to book Madrid's place in the next round despite Alvaro Arbeloa being sent off in the closing stages.

You can read how a dramatic night of European football unfolded with Sports Mole live play-by-play coverage below.


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6.45pmGood evening! Thank you for joining Soprts Mole for what promises to be another electric night of European football as Galatasaray host Real Madrid in the quarter-final second leg.

6.47pmThere is nothing quite like a Champions League night and, although Real Madrid are the overwhelming favourites to progress, don't expect that to dampen Gala's spirits tonight. Their fans are always mentioned among the world's most passionate and tonioght will be no different. Expect noise, and lots of it.

6.49pmThe fact that Real Madrid, arguably the world's most famous club, are coming to town should only serve to stir the crowd into even more of a frenzy and, if they can get an early goal, they may even start to believe that an unlikely comeback would be possible.

6.51pmHowever, they will know as well as anyone that the odds are firmly stacked against them. They have been in good form in the league, losing just one of their last 10 matches to put them top of the table but, with all due respect, their domestic opponents are not of the same quality as Real Madrid.

6.53pmDon't be fooled into thinking that Galatasaray lack European pedigree, however. They beat a strong Schalke side to get this far in the competition and also beat Manchester United - who were knocked out by Madrid in the last round - earlier this season.

6.55pmAll in all, tonight should be a fairly comfortable one for Madrid, though, or at least as comfortable as an away match against Galatasaray can be. They merely need to stop the Turks scoring three goals and, with such an impressive strike force, it is likely that they will get on the scoresheet themselves, which would make Gala's task even harder.

6.57pmMadrid's chances of catching Barcelona in La Liga may well have evaporated, but they look likely to secure second place after a fine run of form since the winter break. They have played 13 matches since then, winning 10, drawing two and losing just one.

6.59pmThey are now 13 points behind Barca in the league and three points clear of city rivals Atletico Madrid. Looking past just their league form, Madrid have also flourished in other competitions since the winter break. They have lost just once in 21 matches, drawing five and winning the remaining 15.

7.01pmTEAM NEWS: Right, time to bring you folks some team news I think! The big news is that Galatasaray's Burak Yilmaz, who has taken the competitions by storm with his goals this season, is suspended and won't play. For Madrid, the usual suspects such as Ronaldo and Ozil do start despite their healthy lead. Full team news coming right up...


7.03pmGALATASARAY STARTING XI: Muslera; Zan, Kaya, Eboue, Altintop; Inan, Felipe Melo, Riera, Sneijder; Drogba, Bulut

7.05pmREAL MADRID STARTING XI: Diego López; Essien, Varane, Pepe, Coentrão; Khedira, Özil, Modric; Ronaldo, Higuaín, Di María

7.07pmREAL MADRID SUBS: Casillas, Benzema, Marcelo, Arbeloa, Albiol, Callejon, Morata

7.09pmSo, what can we make of those starting lineups? I'll start by looking at Galatasaray, and there are a host of players that will be recognisable to a lot of readers. The likes of Emmanuel Eboue, Albert Riera and Didier Drogba all enjoyed spells in the Premier League, while we all know what Wesley Sneijder can do.

7.11pmThey will no doubt miss Yilmaz up front, though. His goals have been a huge reason that the Turkish side have got this far, and if they were to stand any chance of overturning such a big deficit then they probably needed him available tonight. His Champions League tally this campaign has been comparable to Messi and Ronaldo, so he will be a big miss.

7.12pmHaving said that, Gala do possess significant quality elsewhere in the side. Seeing as it is goals that they are after tonight, I'll start by looking at their strikers. Didier Drogba is still a player of immense quality who can be unplayable on his day. Remember, it was less than a year ago that he scored the winning penalty for Chelsea in the final of this competition. Umut Bulut also has plenty of experience and a keen eye for goal, having scored 12 times in 24 matches so far this season.

7.14pmElsewhere, the likes of Sneijder have the ability to pull the strings in midfield. He could be Gala's most important player today and, if he plays as well as we know he can, then the hosts' chances of success will be significantly improved. He didn't have the best of matches in the first leg, so could be keen to show exactly what he can do tonight.

7.16pmAs far as Madrid are concerned, the danger man will be the same as ever - Cristiano Ronaldo. The Portuguese star will go down as one of the greatest players to have ever played the game, and we are lucky enough to see him in the prime of his career. He seems to score in every match that he plays, so Galatasaray will have to keep an extra-close eye on him.

7.18pmTheir second most important player is usually Xabi Alonso, but Mesut Ozil will no doubt take up the mantle of playmaker tonight. The German has the ability to pick a pass that few others could even see, and he is responsible for setting up a lot of Ronaldo's chances. If Gala want to stop Madrid in an attacking sense, they need to stop Ronaldo and Ozil more than anyone.

7.20pmOf course, then you have the likes of Gonzalo Higuain, Angel Di Maria and Luka Modric who can all weigh in with a goal, and it is this quality throughout the side that makes Madrid one of the favourites for this season's title.

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7.22pmThey are equally strong in defence. Once again, Casillas only makes the bench, but in front of Diego Lopez is a formidable backline. I particularly like Varane, who looks to have a very bright future in the game. He has all of the attributes to become a great defender.

7.24pmSo, form and quality throughout the starting XI tell us that Madrid should win this one, but what does the history of this fixture say?

7.26pmWell, it's not great reading for the Turkish side again. Madrid have won the last three meetings between these two sides, although the only time that the Spanish giants have faced Gala on the Turkish side's own turf in recent years saw Galatasaray win 3-2.

7.28pmThere is no doubt that Gala's home advantage will make a difference tonight. Whether it makes as big a difference as the hosts need remains to be seen - I suspect not - but this can be a very intimidating place to come even for the most experienced of players.

7.30pmThere's is only so much that the '12th man' can do in football matches, however. It will be up to the 11 on the field to try to stop Madrid tonight, and that is no easy task.

7.32pmIt's not just as if they have to stop Madrid either. The hosts need to at least match Madrid's 3-0 scoreline in the firstleg to stand any chance of going through!

7.35pmPREDICTION: We're 10 minutes from kickoff in Turkey, which means that it's time for the prediction. I can't see Gala pulling off a miracle and getting the three goals they need to force extra time here and, although they may give a good account fo themselves on the night, I think that it will be the first leg that is their undoing. I can see them scoring but can't see them keeping Madrid out, so I'm going to predict a 2-2 draw.

7.37pmNow is as good a time as any to remind you of the implications for the hosts tonight. Should they win 3-0, the match would go into extra time. If they win 4-0 or more then they would autmoatically progress. However, if Real Madrid can get a goal then Galatasaray will be left needing to score at least five to go through. It's a very tall order.

7.39pmIt will be interesting to see how Mourinho approaches this game tonight. He knows that another goal would completely kill the game off, but he will also know that an early goal from the hosts could give them the hope and belief to push on for more, as well as lifting the crowd. Does he risk it knowing that he has a safety net, or does he play it safe and try to nick a goal on a counter attack?

7.41pmFor Galatasaray manager Fatih Terim, there is only one choice - all out attack. To score three times against Madrid is a very tall order, but to do so without conceding at the other end requires a near-perfect performance. An early goal would put a little more pressure on Madrid, and Terim will surely be telling his players that stranger things have happened in this competition!


7.43pmWe're just two minutes from kickoff here, so there is just enough time to remind you about the night's other Champions League tie between Malaga and Dortmund. I will keep you updated with any goals from that match as and when they go in.

7.45pmThe players are out and we're just about ready to go here. Galatasaray face a huge task to qualify - can they do it against all the odds?

7.47pmGala will need to come from 3-0 down in the Champions League in Istanbul. Liverpool fans won't need reminding that such a feat has been done before.

0 minKICKOFF: And we're off! The match starts amid a cacophony of noise, these fans certianly know how to make a good atmosphere!

1 minSneijder swings an early cross into the box but it isn't near any of his teammates. Still, Coentrao doesn't look certain about leaving it.

3 minCHANCE! Madrid come so close to killing this game off within two minutes. A very quick counter attack sees Ronaldo release Higuain but the keeper comes out to slide in at his feet to half-clear. The ball falls to Di Maria, but his shot is saved in unorthodox fashion by the feet of a backtracking Muslera.

5 minEboue tries to race past Coentrao but he slips after knocking the ball past the Madrid man and the ball rolls out for a goal kick.

6 minThe booing has barely stopped from the home fans here as they contest every single decision, or lack of decision, that the referee makes.

7 minGOAL! Galatasaray 0-1 Real Madrid (Cristiano Ronaldo)

8 minWe're only seven minutes into the second leg, but that is surely the tie over. Ozil slips it to Khedira inside the box, and he drills it across the six yard box where Ronaldo is waiting to hammer in an easy chance. Thats's 47 goals in 47 games for the forward this season. Gala now need five goals.

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9 minSAVE! The hosts give the ball away cheaply inside their own half and, to make things worse, they give it to Ronaldo. He bears down on the opposition box before working space to shoot, but Muslera is down comfortably to save. Ronaldo looks in the mood tonight, though.

11 minMadrid are dominating things at the moment. They work the ball out wide to Essien, but his cross is far too heavy. I would be surprised if Madrid don't add at least one more goal to their tally tonight.

13 minA decent move by Gala sees Altintop and Bulut combine to find Drogba inside the box, but the forner Chelsea striker's first-time cross was behind his strike partner, allowing Madrid to clear.

14 minSneijder whips a very dangerous delivery into the box that Drogba is just inches from connecting with it. It goes just over his head, however, before being well cleared by Varane. This is better from the hosts, though.

15 minMelo opens the defence up with a proing pass which Sneijder looks to get on to inside the box. Melo had to put pace on the pass for it to beat the defence, but the pace also sees it beat Sneijder and go out for a goal kick.

17 minEssien has been up and down that right flank a lot of times already today. Again he makes his way into the hosts' half, but this time his run is halted by a late challenge by Melo.

19 minYELLOW CARD! Sneijder picks up a yellow card for dissent after Eboue looked to race past Coentrao, who went down under the full-backs physical presence. It was a borderline decision, but that is a silly card for Sneijder to pick up.

21 minMelo puts in what looks to be a clean tackle, but again the ref blows for a foul. I think it's fair to say that the home players, manager and crowd are getting increasingly annoyed at this ref.

23 minCHANCE! A brilliant piece of skill from Ronaldo sees him flick the ball through to Di Maria, who finds himself one-on-one with the keeper. He hits a powerful shot first time, but Muslera makes a fine one-handed save. Di Maria should have scored but take nothing away from the save.

25 minUPDATE! Big news from the other quarter-final as Joaquin has given Malaga a lead against Dortmund. That is an away goal and the first of the tie, so Dortmund now need two goals if they want to go through.

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27 minKhedira does well to hook the ball into Higuain in the box while falling over, but the striker, can't make the most of it as Melo gets back to dispossess him.

29 minREAL MADRID SUB: Essien is struggling with an injury here and it doesn't look like he will be able to continue. He limps off the field to be replaced by Alvaro Arbeloa.

31 minArbeloa's first contribution is to foul Sneijder in a very promising position for the hosts. Sneijder may be interested in this one himself, but Galatasaray have no shortage of free kick specialists.

33 minCaptain Inan pulls rank and takes it himself, but his strike hits the top of the wall and goes out for a corner. Perhaps he should have left that to Drogba or Sneijder.

34 minGalatasaray have enjoyed the majority of possession in this match so far but they aren't doing enough with it. Lopez is yet to be tested in the Madrid goal tonight.

36 minA hopeful ball forward by Coentrao sees Drogba chasing shadows and he looks to have fouled the full-back, but the ref points for a corner, not a free kick.

37 minSAVE! The hosts work the ball to the edge of the box where Sneijder has a bit of space. He is quickly closed down but still manages to get a low shot away that Lopez does well to hold on to.

39 minUPDATE: Dortmund have got a goal back in the other quarter-final through Lewandowski. It is now 1-1 on the night but Malaga lead on away goals still. Dortmund need at least one more goal.

40 minEbouse slips a dangerous pass in towards Drogba, but it is just a tiny bit too heavy and the striker can't get on the end of it. Nice idea from Eboue and he very nearly pulled it off.

41 minSHOT! The hosts are becoming more dangerous in the closing stages of this half. Sneijder finds Inan, who in turn helps it on to Bulut. The strike turns his man on the edge of the box but fires his shot quite a way over the bar.

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43 minDi Maria has a good chance to release Ronaldo but he puts too much on his pass when under pressure. It hasn't really happened for Madrid since the goal, but then again they aren't the ones who need a goal. They seem content enough to soak up any pressure from Galatasaray before breaking with the ball.

45 minYELLOW CARD! Eboue has earned himself a yellow card here after bringing down Ronaldo. I'm not sure that that was solely for the foul, he may have talked himself into the book a bit there.

45 minWe will have two minutes of added time in Istanbul.

45+2 minHALF TIME: Galatasary 0-1 Real Madrid (Real Madrid lead 4-0 on aggregate)

8.38pmThe referee brings an end to a comfortable half from Madrid's point of view. They have done exactly what they needed to do, and killed the game off very early on with Ronaldo's seventh minute goal. Since then, Madrid have invited Galatasaray to attack them but the hosts have not been able to threaten Diego Lopez's goal as often as the possession may suggest.

8.40pmThe goal had a hint of offside about it, although none of the replays that I have seen so far are conclusive, so I'll give Ronaldo the benefit of the doubt.

8.42pmMadrid could be even further ahead here too. Di Maria had a brilliant chance to get a goal but he was denied by a fine Muslera save, while the Gala keeper also denied Di Maria on another occasion early on.

8.44pmThe worst thing that Madrid could have done is concede an early goal tonight. That would have given the home fans and players a huge lift and would've heaped pressure on Madrid. However, what happened was exactly the opposite and it was Madrid who silenced the fans.

8.46pmOverall, Madrid have looked very comfortable today. Even when they are letting the opposition spend prolonged periods of time in possession they still look calm and in control. Such was the way that half went that I can't see Galatasaray winning this one on the night. At best they may nick a draw, but there are also more goals in this one for Madrid if they want them.

8.48pmOf course, as a tie this one was over. It was pretty much done and dusted before kickoff, but Ronaldo's goal means that Galatasaray need to score five times to stand any chance of going through, and I will put my neck on the line and say that that is not going to happen.


8.50pmCertainly, if it does happen, then it will be arguably the greatest comeback in Champions League history. This city has already seen one contender for that crown in the 2005 Champions League final, but I don't think it will be seeing another one tonight.

8.52pmThe players are starting to spill out onto the field for this second half and we're just about ready to go.

45 minKICKOFF: Here we go again! Madrid are 45 minutes away from reaching the semi-finals here.

45 minGALATASARAY SUB: The hosts have made a change at half time, bringing on Amrabat in place of Altintop.

46 minThe hosts make a good start to the half, immediately hauling a high ball into the box to test Lopez. Drogba contests it and makes life difficult for the keeper, but the ref blows for a foul. That looked harsh, Drogba went up fairly there.

48 minSHOT! Gala work the ball inside to Inan, who is in plenty of space about 25 yards from goal. He could roll it across to Melo, but chooses to go for goal from range himself, sending his effort over the bar.

50 minGalatasaray are playing a very narrow midfield here, and a direct consequence of that is the inability to get wide and send dangerous crosses in to the likes of Drogba.

52 minKhedira is down in a heap after a physical challenge from Zan. It was good defending from the Galatasary man, but he may have accidentally trodden on Khedira after the inital tackle.

54 minRiera sweeps through Di Maria from behind and Madrid have yet another free kick. The foul count is totting up and the match is becoming a bit broken up as a result.

56 minCHANCE! He is human! What a chance for Madrid to double their lead, but it is Ronaldo who misses it! Di Maria breaks free and passes it inside to Ronaldo, who should just slot it past the keeper from close range. He takes a touch but then fluffs his shot well wide! That was very un-Ronaldo like!

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58 minGOAL! Galatasaray 1-1 Real Madrid (Emmanuel Eboue)

58 minWhat is happening here?! Moments after Ronaldo misses a sitter, Eboue scores a screamer! The ball falls to the former Arsenal man on the edge of the box and he smashes a bullet of a strike perfectly into the top corner. He couldn't have placed that any better!

60 minEboue immediately raced to get the ball back after that goal so that they could restart the match as soon as possible. It's ambitious thinking from Eboue, but it shows that they still believe!

61 minCHANCE! Oh what a huge chance for Galatasaray to really put the pressure on Madrid! Drogba battles away to win the ball off Varane before playing it across the box to Sneijder who is completely unmarked at the back post with the goal gaping. Somehow, though, he dragged his shot well wide of the goal when it was easier to score. That should have been a tap in for a player of his quality.

63 minGALATASARAY SUB: Sarioglu, who is a right-back by trade, comes on for the striker Bulut. Interesting change for the hosts, but it could give them better width.

65 minPENALTY SHOUT! A high ball at the back post finds Drogba unmarked, but he can't get the desired conection as his effort trickles wide. However, Pepe came flying in late on Drogba and caught the striker, but the ref said no penalty. I've seen them given!

67 minThe crowd is getting louder by the minute here and you sense that they believe that they can still do this! Certainly they are the better team at the moment, but their task is still huge. If Sneijder had scored that chance then it really would have been game on, though.

69 minEboue gives the ball to Sarioglu, who whips a dangerous ball into the box. Sneijder has peeled off his man at the back post and it looks destined for his head in a position from which he would surely score, but Di Maria gets a vital flick on it to send it behind for a corner.

70 minGOAL! Galatasaray 2-1 Real Madrid (Wesley Sneijder)

71 minSneijder atones for his shocking earlier miss and the belief in the ground grows even more! Sneijder gets the ball on the edge of the box and his first touch is perfect to take him beyond Varane before he calmly slots it past Lopez.

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72 minGOAL! Galatasaray 3-1 Real Madrid (Didider Drogba)

73 minOh my word surely not?! Galatasaray now only need two goals and the way this second half has gone I wouldn't bet against it! Amrabat takes on his man before drilling a ball to Drogba, who shows good strength to hold off Varane before flicking the ball brilliantly past Lopez. It really is game on now!

74 minCLOSE! Ronaldo looks to steal the headlines back, and he comes very close to doing so. He brings a lofted ball over the top down instantly in the box before looking to volley it into the far corner, but it goes just over.

75 minREAL MADRID SUB: Gonzalo Higuain came off just after the Galatasaray goal to be replaced by Karim Benzema.

76 minThis crowd is loud at the worst of times, but on occasions like this they may well be the loudest fans on earth. The atmosphere is electric at the moment!

78 minMadrid have eased their way back into this match since the hosts got their third goal. It is now up to the likes of Modric and Ozil to dictate the tempo of this one now.

79 minGALATASARAY SUB: A very positive change from Terim here. He brings on Johan Elmander for Eboue, who got this Gala revival underway with his screamer.

80 minDISALLOWED GOAL! Wow, things almost got very interesting there! The ball runs through to Drogba, who shows good feet, strength and composure to hold off a challenge and slip it past Lopez, only to be correctly flagged offside.

81 minREAL MADRID SUB: Mourinho is nervous, and that shows in his sub. Off comes Ozil and on comes Albiol, who will slip into defence in order to bolster Madrid's backline.

83 minUPDATE: Spain look set to have the first two Champions League semi-finalists as Malaga have scored again in Germany. They now lead Dortmund 2-1 and the Germans need two goals in the closing stages if they want to progress.

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85 minMadrid have just taken the sting out of this one, but another goal for the hosts in the next few minutes would really spice things up. Remember, Galatasaray need two goals more to go through.

87 minDrogba tries to spin away from Varane and race through on goal, but the French defender has plenty of pace and clears the danger.

88 minUPDATE: Things are getting interesting in Germany too! Dortmund have equalised to make it 2-2 in second half stoppage time. They still need another goal to go through, though.

89 minRED CARD! Alvaro Arbeloa (Real Madrid)

89 minWow, that may be the silliest and most innocuous red card I have ever seen. Arbeloa picks up his frst yellow for nothing much, but then he keeps on at the referee and earns himself a second yellow in as many minutes. What a stupid red card.

90 minThere will be three minutes of added time here, will there be a thrilling finish?

90+1 minUPDATE: I can tell you that there has been a thrilling finish in Dortmund, who have scored twice in stoppage time to book their place in the semi-final.

90+2 minGOAL! Galatasaray 3-2 Real Madrid (Cristiano Ronaldo)

90+3 minThere won't be a dramatic finish in this one as Ronaldo has finally killed off Galatasaray's hopes for good. Benzema made his way to the byline before cutting it back to the striker, who made no mistake with his finish.

90+3 minFULL TIME: Galatasaray 3-2 Real Madrid (Real Madrid win 5-3 on aggregate)


9.44pmWow, what a second half that was. The match ends with Amrabat being shown a yellow card, but his Galatasaray side came so close to pulling off one of the best comebacks in this tournament's long, illustrious history. Ronaldo gave Madrid a lead in the first half before Eboue, Sneijder and Drogba put the hosts 3-1 up needing just two goal to win. Ronaldo scored late on to scupper those hopes, but Galatasaray gave a very good account of themselves in that second half.

9.45pmRight, that's it from me tonight. Thank you for joining Sports Mole for what was a breathless night of European football, both in Turkey and Germany. Real Madrid lost 3-2 on the night against Galatasaray but go through to the semi-final courtesy of a 5-3 aggregate win, while Dortmund scored twice in second half stoppage time to book their place in the next round too. I will leave you with Subhankar's match report and be sure to stick around for analysis. Good night!

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho and Didier Drogba embrace after winning the League Cup on February 25, 2007
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