Champions League - Gareth Bale On Target As Holders Real Madrid Down AS Roma - SportsGuru

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Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Champions League - Gareth Bale On Target As Holders Real Madrid Down AS Roma

      Gareth Bale scored as Real Madrid moved on from the departures of Cristiano Ronaldo and Zinedine Zidane with a 3-0 win over AS Roma on Wednesday to confidently launch their pursuit of a fourth successive Champions League title. Isco curled in a terrific free-kick just before half time at the Santiago Bernabeu, with Bale powering in a second and Mariano Diaz striking late as Real made a convincing start to their Group G campaign. "I thought the performance was very good tonight; the only disappointment was that we didn't score more," said Bale, who struck for the fourth time in five matches.

"Real Madrid will always be Real Madrid, no matter who leaves. We keep on trying to win, keep on trying to score goals."

Julen Lopetegui fielded 10 of the 11 players who began the 3-1 victory over Liverpool in last season's final, with Bale - the two-goal hero after coming off the bench in Kiev - taking the place of the departed Ronaldo.

Keylor Navas was selected in goal ahead of close-season signing Thibaut Courtois, while Roma boss Eusebio Di Francesco handed a senior debut to 19-year-old midfielder Nicolo Zaniolo.

Last season's semi-finalists quickly found themselves subjected to sustained pressure, as Bale drilled narrowly wide of Robin Olsen's left-hand post within the opening five minutes.

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