Alvaro Morata scored a 95th-minute winner as Real Madrid came from behind to record a 2-1 victory over Sporting Lisbon in Wednesday night’s Champions League contest in the Spanish capital.
Bruno Cesar had sent an impressive Sporting side one goal ahead early in the second period of the Group F clash, but Cristiano Ronaldo levelled with an 89th-minute free kick, before Morata won it with virtually the last touch of the match.
Gareth Bale provided the home side’s main threat in the opening 20 minutes as he tested Rui Patricio with a low drive before delivering a super cross into Benzema, who was just beaten to the ball by the stretching Nelson Semedo.
Real Madrid took control of the possession as the first half gathered pace, but Sporting were carrying a real threat on the counter as Martins and Ruiz looked to feed Bas Dost inside the home side’s box.
It was Sporting that continued to look the most likely to make the breakthrough and Silva tested Casilla from distance in the 41st minute, but the Spanish goalkeeper made the save as the two teams ended the half-time break on level terms.
Sporting that made the breakthrough in the 47th minute, however, when Cesar found the bottom corner with a curling effort after reacting first to a loose ball inside the home side’s box.
The opening goal appeared to shock Real Madrid into life, but Sporting were still carrying a threat and Casilla had to get down to keep out another Cesar strike in the 53rd minute as the enthralling game continued to entertain.
Sporting boss Jorge Jesus was sent to the stands 30 minutes from time after arguing with the fourth official, but his team continued to create opportunities and Dost headed another super Martins cross just wide in the 62nd minute.
Alvaro Morata and Lucas Vasquez were introduced 20 minutes from time as Zidane looked to his bench for inspiration, but Sporting continued to close the space in the final third, with Sebastian Coates and Semedo both impressing at the back.
Morata came within inches of meeting a dangerous Vasquez cross in the 73rd minute as Real Madrid came close to levelling, but former Liverpool defender Coates was once again on hand to make an excellent block.
Real Madrid would not take no for an answer, however, and Ronaldo sent a brilliant free kick into the top corner in the 89th minute to level the scores against his former club, before Morata headed a James Rodriguez cross past Patricio to win it in the fifth minute of added time.