Liverpool beat Salzburg in wild 7-goal thriller

Youthful Real Madrid beaten soundly by CSKA in group stage finale

12/12/2018

Real Madrid suffered their heaviest ever home defeat in Europe on Wednesday when the already-qualified Spaniards were thumped 3-0 at the Santiago Bernabeu by CSKA Moscow in the Champions League.

The Russian side's remarkable victory, however, was still not enough to secure them a spot in the Europa League as they were pipped to third place in Group G by Viktoria Plzen.

Feder Chalov put CSKA in front against the group winners and triple Champions League holders with a curling shot in the 37th minute and Georgi Shchennikov doubled the visitors' advantage two minutes before halftime with a scrappy volley on the rebound.

Iceland international Arnor Sigurdsson struck a remarkable third goal for the Russians in the 73rd minute, completing an unlikely second victory for CSKA over Madrid in this Champions League campaign and provoking loud boos and whistles from the unhappy home supporters.

CSKA also won 1-0 in the Russian capital in October when Julen Lopetegui was in charge of the Spaniards, a result which sparked the beginning of the end for the Spanish coach's brief spell in charge of Real.

CSKA's only two wins in the competition this season have come against the 13-times winners and they finished bottom of the group on seven points due to their inferior head-to-head record against Plzen, who beat AS Roma 2-1.

Real, who were already guaranteed top spot, remained on 12 points while Roma, who had clinched second place in the group, ended on nine.

Madrid coach Santiago Solari made seven changes from the side who had scraped a 1-0 victory over La Liga basement club Huesca on Sunday, including handing winger Vinicius Jr. and defender Javi Sanchez their first starts in the Champions League.

Spain international Marco Asensio came close to giving Real the lead when he struck the post midway through the first half but CSKA grew in confidence as the game progressed, particularly after taking the lead.

Hoping to spark a second-half revival, Solari threw on Gareth Bale but had a scare when the injury-prone Wales forward appeared to hurt his ankle and required treatment on the pitch, but he was eventually able to continue.

Toni Kroos and Dani Carvajal were also brought on in a pursuit of a goal but instead the Russians further stretched their lead through Siggurdson and became the first team in Champions League history to beat Real home and away in the same group stage campaign.

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