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Morata scores as Real Madrid beat Reims

Alvaro Morata scored his first goal for Real Madrid since his return from Juventus back in June as Zinedine Zidane’s men beat Reims 5-3 to win the Santiago Bernabeu trophy in a game that marked the 60-year anniversary of the European Cup final between both sides in 1956.

Morata returned to the Spanish capital after two seasons with the Serie A champions, but failed to impress during pre-season and had yet to find the net until Tuesday’s encounter.

But he showed what he is made of at the Bernabeu with a fine finish in the dying minutes of the first half, heading home after a cross from Marcelo to help his side to a 3-1 lead.

Morata then made way for Mariano at half-time as Madrid eventually cruised to victory in a hugely entertaining encounter.

Toni Kroos and Gareth Bale started for Madrid after their prolonged holiday following Euro 2016, but the duo’s return initially did not impress Reims as Pablo Chavarria scored an early opener after a quick counterattack.

Yet Kroos made his mark in the 11th minute as Nacho headed home the equaliser after a pinpoint corner from the Germany international, with Sergio Ramos repeating the trick in the 39th minute as he netted for a 2-1 lead following another set-piece from the former Bayern Munich midfielder.

Morata’s moment of glory came close to the half-time whistle when he beat his direct opponent to Marcelo’s cross from the left and diverted the ball past goalkeeper Johann Carrasso.

There was more to come after the break and Remi Oudin pulled one back within minutes of the restart, before James Rodriguez restored the home side’s two-goal lead with a finish in two instances.

The French side refused to give up, however, and Grejohn Kyei got them back in it when he headed past substitute keeper Ruben Yanez.

But there was no denying Madrid on home soil as Mariano eventually netted his side’s fifth with 10 minutes left on the clock to put the match to bed.

Tue 16 Aug, 2016
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