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Champions League Final: ‘Real Madrid sure know how to suffer’ – Carvajal

Defender nets first Champions League goal in 70 appearances after vital first-half clearance

Santiago Bernabeu

Real Madrid match-winner Dani Carvajal admits his side have forgotten how to do things the easy way after being given a real scare by Dortmund.

The 32-year-old defender – who is only 5’8” – climbed highest to glance home a header from a Toni Kroos corner to put Los Blancos ahead 16 minutes from time at Wembley, with Vinicius Jr adding a clincher nine minutes later.

Until that point Dortmund had bossed long periods of the game, drawing several saves from Thibaut Courtois and Carvajal himself having to produce a sliding intervention after Karim Adeyemi had rounded the Madrid keeper.

Carvajal told Movistar: “I can’t properly explain what this feels like. I’ll settle for immense happiness.

“This game was really complicated. We predicted that in the build-up. We got out of the first half intact and we then knew our moments would come.

“Honestly, we didn’t even deserve to be drawing at half-time.”

Carvajal claimed his sixth title – now sharing the record with Nacho, Luka Modric, Kroos and Real Madrid great Paco Gento – and had gone close with an earlier header from another Kroos corner.

“We sure know how to suffer but, believe me, I’d love to win these matches more easily,” he said. “I’d been coming up for corners most of the season. Determination is key to my approach – I’d headed one over and I just knew I had to score the second one!”

Kroos beat Dortmund at Wembley to win his first Champions League with Bayern Munich 11 years ago and bowed out with number six at the same iconic venue against the same opposition tonight.

The 34-year-old told ZDF: “The decisive thing was that we didn’t concede in the first half. The first half really wasn’t good from us.

“Then we got into the game better and scored the goal. We were fully there and the better team. But it took a long time until we were the better team tonight.”

Picture of Alex Hoad

Alex Hoad

Alex has more than 15 years' experience in sports journalism and has reported on multiple Olympics, World Cups and European Championships in additional to Champions League, Europa League and domestic football.