How Real Madrid celebrated their Champions League victory

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Real Madrid players celebrate with fans.

Real Madrid’s dominating 4-1 win at Cardiff in the Champions League Final, against Juventus, made them the only team to retain the biggest prize in European football.

Thanks to a brace from Cristiano Ronaldo and goals from Casemiro and Marco Asensio, Los Galacticos succeeded in winning their 12th Champions League title.

A few days earlier, they also got hold of the La Liga title, finishing three points above rivals Barcelona, meaning the Duodecima celebrations had to be big and almost never-ending.

In the below video, from Real Madrid’s Official YouTube channel, manager Zinedine Zidane and the fans can be seen celebrating at the Santiago Bernabeu.

The madness didn’t stop there though, as the team headed to the Cibeles, an iconic symbol for the city of Madrid to celebrate with fans and keep the party going.

Captain Sergio Ramos along with his teammates can be seen enjoying their time, clicking pictures and posing while in the team bus.

Amidst all the noise, confetti and fans, Ramos then lifted the Champions League Trophy as songs played in the background.

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Bale won't call it quits at Real

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Gareth Bale wants to make more history at Real Madrid after pledging his future to the Spanish giants.

Bale won his third Champions League winner’s medal in four seasons as Real swept aside Juventus 4-1 in his home city of Cardiff on Saturday night.

But Bale was reduced to the role of bit-part player after recent injury problems, sent on only for the final 13 minutes at the National Stadium of Wales with the game already won.

Bale’s injury woes this season – and the impressive displays of Spanish playmaker Isco in his absence – have led to suggestions that the Wales striker could return to the Premier League this summer. But the 27-year-old says he is determined to remain in Madrid and add to his impressive trophy collection at the Bernabeu.

“I have signed a long-term contract at Madrid,” said Bale, who last October committed himself to Real until 2022.

“My family is happy and I am happy, so yes we will continue what we are doing. We are winning trophies and I am happy.”

Real’s victory saw them become European champions for a record 12th time as Zinedine Zidane’s side became the first club to retain the trophy in the Champions League era. And Bale believes the current team has taken its place among the great Real sides of the past.

“We have won three Champions Leagues in four seasons so we have to be in that category,” he said.

“All we can keep doing is keep working hard and hopefully there will be more to come.

“I think we can get better. We are still quite young as a whole team and we have a great squad.

“Winning again adds to the history of this club. This club is the biggest in Champions League history ever, it’s great to be a part of and we want to win more.”

Bale now plans to return to full fitness over the summer after a mixed 12 months.

He helped Wales to the semi-finals of Euro 2016 last summer, but missed three months of this season after undergoing ankle surgery in November.

Bale was injured again in the El Clasico against Barcelona on April 23, effectively ending his hopes of starting in Cardiff, and he later admitted he may have rushed his return following his ankle operation.

“My ankle will be fine in the long term,” Bale said. “It just needs to be given recovery time. There is scar tissue and all that and it takes time to get rid of it.

“I only found out I wasn’t going to start just before the game. But I always knew really because I’d only been training for five days with the team and I was really lucky to be involved, to be honest.

“I’ve worked double sessions for three, four weeks to get myself ready for this and recover from the surgery.
“But I will be able to rest in the summer, do some more rehab and then come back next season stronger.”

Provided by Press Association

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Zidane must pursue perfection to catch up with Pep’s legacy

Andy West 5/06/2017
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Not bad, Monsieur Zidane. Not bad at all.

And for your next task, you just need to ensure Real Madrid maintain their current excellence.

Saturday’s victory over Juventus was the climax of a spectacular 18 months in charge of Los Blancos for Zinedine Zidane, who has now seen his team become the first to win consecutive Champions League titles as well as ending their five-year wait for supremacy in La Liga.

Those achievements are even more impressive when you consider their sorry state when Zidane replaced Rafa Benitez in January 2016. Back then, Madrid were a disunited and directionless bunch of pampered superstars who looked a long way from challenging Barcelona for bragging rights in Spain, never mind conquering Europe….twice.

Although Zidane is no tactical mastermind, he has undoubtedly played a major role in his team’s march to multiple silverware.

First and foremost, he has maintained a happy camp, finding the balance between massaging egos and leading with authority to keep everyone pulling in the same direction.

He has also made some big technical decisions, starting early in his reign when he reacted to his first defeat – a home derby loss to Atletico – by installing Casemiro as an undisputed member of his starting eleven.

It was not an easy call to make, but the Brazilian is now Madrid’s most important player in terms of maintaining the team’s shape.

Zidane’s management of Cristiano Ronaldo has also been superb, firstly by changing his playing position to allow him to become an out and out striker, and secondly by protecting his physical welfare by regularly resting him throughout the season.

The French coach has also encouraged his team to evolve in other ways, such as finally giving Rafael Varane first-choice status in the centre of defence, and jettisoning the 4-3-3 formation in favour of a midfield diamond which has allowed Isco to excel and provided a generally more stable collective structure.

So there’s no denying that Zidane has done a tremendous job, or that he has transformed his team into the best in the world.

But it’s inevitable that Real Madrid will forever be compared to Barcelona and vice-versa, and now Zidane is challenged with making his team the dominant force in world football, in the same way that Pep Guardiola did at the Nou Camp nearly a decade ago.

Because, to be honest, it’s only really in the last couple of months that Madrid have looked totally convincing.
Last season’s Champions League title was surrounded by a sense of “Yes, but…”.

They had benefitted from a series of fortunate draws against inferior opposition (Wolfsburg in the quarter finals…and they nearly managed to lose that one), and needed a penalty shoot-out against Atletico to become champions after a pretty ordinary performance in the final.

Even earlier this season, Zidane’s men relied on fortune, stubbornness and sheer determination for much of the campaign, with their weaknesses exposed as recently as late April when Barcelona won 3-2 at the Bernabeu.

Since then, however, they have responded magnificently, securing their first league and European double since 1958 in emphatic fashion with a run of eight wins in nine games, and for the first time they now genuinely look like world-beaters.

To remain so, Zidane will have to keep his team evolving. James Rodriguez and Alvaro Morata will probably be sold this summer, and Keylor Navas – despite doing little wrong – is set to be replaced by David de Gea.

Perhaps there will be bigger decisions as well, with maybe even Karim Benzema or Gareth Bale heading through the exit door if Kylian Mbappe is recruited from Monaco.

Zidane also must decide whether Isco should remain a core member of his strongest starting eleven, or whether he should return to his previous bits and pieces role.

So there is work to be done. But if Zidane gets it right, the glory days at the Bernabeu have only just started.

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