GOODNIGHT FROM SPAIN
Before this encounter, both Real Madrid and Inter Milan referred to this evening as a cup final, and that’s how it played out.
Both clubs may be a shadow of their former glories, but together they produced a night of frenzied, attacking football with plenty of mistakes and the odd moments of brilliance.
It was Real Madrid who ended the game victorious, thanks to a goal off the bench from Rodrygo, ably assisted by his fellow substitute Vinicius Junior.
Stopping a run of four Champions League matches without a win, it also moved the La Liga side into third spot in Group B, a point behind leaders Borussia Monchengladbach.
Inter depart Spain rooted to the bottom, but it could have been so different had they kept their cool after pulling level.
Two goals down inside 33 minutes, the Nerazzurri had rallied to draw level through Lautaro Martinez – wonderfully set up by Nicolo Barella’s audacious backheel – and Ivan Perisic, only to throw the game away again in the final stages.
Instead, Los Blancos took the points and plaudits, ending the night with the same delight with which it had begun as goals from Karim Benzema and Sergio Ramos set them on their way.
The final word should be for Ramos. The Real Madrid captain knows all about lifting the Champions League trophy, and tonight scored his 100th goal for his club. An absolutely astonishing feat for a centre-back.
These European heavyweights will do it all again in three weeks’ time at the San Siro. Expect more fireworks.
Until then, thanks for reading and goodnight.