Real Madrid have had some shoddy Champions League performances in the previous few seasons. Plenty, in fact, since they last won the trophy with victory over Liverpool.
If you were going to rank them, however, you’d probably have a hard time looking past Wednesday night.
As on Wednesday night Real Madrid faced a team who had been decimated by injuries and players absent due to contracting COVID-19 – no less than ten absent for the trip to the Spanish capital – and were, quite simply embarrassed.
Ripped apart by their opponents in glorious fashion, the wonderful world of Twitter acted accordingly in letting Los Blancos know exactly how they felt.
Indeed, Tete’s goal on the stroke on the half hour mark came off the back of a stunning run from left-back Viktor Korniyenko, who teed up (one of) his Brazilian teammates to stroke the ball home.
With no time to rest on their laurels, it became two!
A Madrid side with the advantage of not having an entire literal team missing, found themselves 2-0 down after 33 minutes. Thibaut Courtois’ dodgy attempt to save a shot saw him parry the effort straight into the path of Detinho, but before the striker could unleash, Raphael Varane took it upon himself to tap it in.
Aaaaaaaaand then it was three.
Slate Madrid for their atrocious defending, but credit where credit is due, Shakhtar found a wonderful balance in deep midfield runners playing off Tete. The striker who, by the way, was playing out of his skin.
Zinedine Zidane had words at half time. No idea what they were, but we can assume they didn’t include lines you’d find in a tourist’s book of useful Spanish phrases.
Zipping the ball about better, it doesn’t matter how you pass when you can hit a ball like Luka Modric.
What. A. Stunner.
If Shakhtar weren’t rattled before, they sure were just three minutes later.
Madrid, who were dead and buried at 3-0, pulled it back to 3-2 through Vinicius Junior.
Game very much on.
It had to be coming.
Having been so atrocious in the first half, the chalk and cheese nature of Madrid’s performance after the restart indicated that Shakhtar’s resilience couldn’t last.
A Ukrainian brick wall stood firm in front of endless Blancos possession, but even still there were chances for the visitors to secure the points with some spurned opportunities late on.
However, in stoppage time, their spirits were broken when Federico Valverde scored following a corner.
BUT OH NO THEY DIDN’T! Good ol’ VAR to the rescue for the Ukrainian side, who secured a famous win!
A day to savour for Shakhtar.