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Real Madrid survive late onslaught from Atletico Madrid

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Atletico Madrid's quarter-final first leg tie with city rivals Real Madrid ended goalless at the Vicente Calderon in a feisty affair that didn't produce many clear cut chances.

Players on both sides had opportunities to score but neither were able to convert, with Atletico Madrid's goalkeeper Jan Oblak the star man, keeping Real out on many occasions in the first half.

It was a very physical game with elbows flying everywhere, shirts being pulled and Mario Mandzukic was lucky not to be sent off as he was involved in many confrontations with Real right-back Dani Carvajal.

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Sergio Ramos was also lucky to stay on the pitch after he had a kick-out at Koke and several nips at the heels of Raul Garcia towards the end of the game.

Marcelo and Mario Suarez will both miss the second leg after picking up yellow cards.

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Real came into the game having defeated the likes of Granada 9-1 but hadn't won against their city rivals either of the two times they have met this season, or even El Classico rivals Barcelona.

From winning four trophies in 2013/14, it's looking more and more likely the Champions League is Los Galactico's best chance of any silverware this season.

Atletico form

Atletico on the other hand had only lost one of their last eight games against Real so were slight favourites for this game.

The game started with Atletico on the front foot, however a swift counter-attack from Ronaldo down the right-wing resulted in right-back Dani Carvajal forcing a save from Oblak. Soon after Gareth Bale went through and forced Oblak to charge off his goal line to make the save.

Real won a free-kick 35-yards from goal in the sixth minute, when Mandzukic brought down fellow Croat Luka Modric from behind in a tangle of legs. Ronaldo was the obvious taker but his drive was too close to Atletico's Slovenian goal-keeper to be a challenge.

Real had a half chance to score after 18-minutes when Raphael Varane's hoofed clearance ended up at the feet of a sprinting Ronaldo, however neither he nor Karim Benzema could capitalise and Atletico got enough men back to snuff out any chance of a goal.

For the first 30-minutes Atletico seemed happy to sit back and let Real have the ball, dictating the pace and tempo of the game.

James Rodriguez brought a fantastic save out of Oblak yet again as the Colombian number 10 picked the ball up outside the box from a Real corner and hit a bending shot with the outside of his boot.

Real's pressure was unrelenting and Modric took a chance from long range, but couldn't control the height of his shot, sending the ball over the cross bar.

Oblak rescued Atletico again, as Varane showed the full-back in him with a great run down the right-wing and whipping the ball into the box but again neither Ronaldo, Benzema or Rodriguez could get the ball in the net.

Atletico winger Koke perhaps did Sergio Ramos a favour, as the Real Madrid defender put a stamp on his Spanish compatriot only for the two to shake hands. If Koke had been in a different mind set Real may well have been down to 10 men with the second half still to play.

With the first half at an end, everyone was wondering how the game was still 0-0. Oblak had saved Atletico on more than one occasion and Real must have been asking themselves what else they would have to do to get a goal past the big Slovenian.

Atletico got some good possession at the start of the second half, getting numbers in the box and Antoine Griezmann managing to get a cross in but Arda Turan couldn't get his header on target, firing just wide of Iker Casillas' goal.

Play was stopped on 50-minutes when a clash between Ramos and Mandzukic resulted in the Croatia international bleeding from his brow. Despite his emotional remonstrating towards the referee, the official adjudged the incident to be accidental.

The cut was bleeding profusely and Mandzukic kept going off every few minutes to get attention from medical staff.

Benzema had a great chance to put Real Madrid ahead after the hour mark when Marcelo got in a cross to the French man into the box but he decided to pass to Bale instead of shoot himself and the momentum of the attack was lost.

Mandzukic was very lucky not to get sent off with a second yellow card as he appeared to put an intentional elbow in the face of the approaching Carvajal. The referee however decided to reprieve the Atletico striker and instead gave Real a free-kick.

Real Madrid made a change with 15-minutes left on the clock, putting on Isco in place of the frustrated Benzema.

Atletico Madrid followed suit minutes later by taking off Griezmann and sending on Garcia.

Atletico got a rare chance to put pressure on the Real Madrid defence but Mario Suarez wasted the opportunity, sending his chipped pass out for a goal kick.

Diego Godin had a golden chance to put Atletico one up in the tie from a long throw in but could only hit the ball over Casillas' goal.

On loan AC Milan striker Fernando Torres became Atletico's second change of the night coming on for Koke, followed by Real with a straight swap at right-back: Alvaro Arbeloa for Carvajal.

Not for the first time in the match Modric shot over the bar from outside the box following a clearance by Mandzukic from a corner.

Torres had a shout for a penalty on 86-minutes but his claims were waved away in favour of a corner for Atletico.

Marcelo was then yellow carded after he jumped into the back of Torres, meaning the Brazilian full-back will miss the second leg at the Santiago Bernabeu.

Atletico had another cry for a penalty on 90-minutes when Mandzukic fired a shot straight into Arbeloa, although on second viewing it was obvious the ball only hit the Spaniard's stomach.

Into three minutes of added time and play was getting very scrappy, with Real surviving a goal mouth scramble than Casillas and Varane managed to only just clear between them.

Next Wednesday's second leg will be the eighth Madrid derby of the season.

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Topics:
Football
Real Madrid
UEFA Champions League

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