Real Madrid beats Liverpool 1-0 for 14th European Cup title

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Real Madrid became European champions for a record 14th time as they beat Liverpool 1-0 in the Champions League final, which began 37 minutes late due to troubling crowd issues outside the Stade de France on Saturday.

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Brazilian winger Vinicius Jr. applied a close-range finish in the 59th minute in front of a goal from Federico Valverde’s drive, securing a victory that gave Madrid coach Carlo Ancelotti a record fourth European Cup title.

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While Madrid completed a Champions League-La Liga double, Liverpool finished a season that promised so much – a week earlier, it was in contention for an unprecedented quadruple of major trophies – with two domestic cups in England.

The English side could not find a way to get ahead of Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois, who hit Sadio Mane’s first-half shot on the post and made an even better save to thwart Mohamed Salah’s effort in the 81st.

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Madrid cemented its position as the king of European football, noting that the Spanish giant has twice the number of European Cups as number 2 on AC Milan’s list. Liverpool remained on six.

However, pre-match crowding issues affected this final, and is sure to be the focus of an investigation by UEFA and officials in the coming days.
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With 45 minutes remaining before kickoff, there were still long lines of Liverpool fans waiting to go into the stadium, and there were sporadic instances of fans breaking through security and running at the crowd.

The Associated Press saw two fans – one wearing a Liverpool outfit – wrestled to the ground by the stewards and bundled up outside the gates, while the others managed to go all the way to the arena.

Things got out of hand as riot police fired tear gas at Liverpool supporters in lines, while some fans were seen climbing over the fence. Officers with batons and riot shields ran from gate to gate to stop the pockets of fans at the stadium without showing tickets.

About 15 minutes before the scheduled kickoff at 9 p.m. (1900 GMT) local time, an announcement was made that the stadium would be delayed, accusing fans of being late. It was greeted by cheers inside the stadium, given that fans were already facing long queues.

The scenes were reminiscent of the chaos outside Wembley Stadium ahead of the European Championship final between England and Italy last year.

Credit: www.marketwatch.com /

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