Champions League final: How the players rated as Real Madrid beat Juventus

Cristiano Ronaldo celebrates scoring for Real Madrid against Juventus in the Champions League final
Real Madrid became the first team in the Champions League era to retain the trophy

Real Madrid defeated Juventus 4-1 in Cardiff to win the European Cup for a record 12th time.

Cristiano Ronaldo scored twice to take his tally to 105 goals in the Champions League as the Spanish side became the first team since AC Milan in 1990 to retain the title.

It had been an even and enthralling opening half in Cardiff with Mario Mandzukic cancelling out Ronaldo's opener.

But there was only one team in it after the break, with the Spanish side taking control to ensure Juve's miserable run in Champions League finals continued - they have now lost their last five.

But who stood out as history was made in Cardiff?

Juventus

Gianluigi Buffon (goalkeeper) - 6

Juventus conceded more goals in the final than they have in the rest of the Champions League campaign this season
Juventus conceded more goals in the final than they have in the rest of the Champions League campaign this season

A loser in the Champions League final of 2003, 2015 and now 2017. It remains the only major prize to elude him, but he could not be blamed for any of Real's goals - from the precision of Cristiano Ronaldo's opener, the deflection that sent Casemiro's shot past him or the two shots that beat him from point-blank range.

Did you know:Buffon - aged 39 years, 126 days, is the third oldest player to feature in a European Cup final after Dino Zoff and Edwin van der Sar.

Dani Alves (right wing-back) - 6

Put in some dangerous whipped crosses early on but was far less of a threat in the second half as Real took control.

Did you know:Dani Alves made his 100th Champions League appearance, becoming the 31st player to reach this milestone and just the second Brazilian after Roberto Carlos.

Giorgio Chiellini (centre-back) - 6

Out-muscled Cristiano Ronaldo early on but Real's relentless attacks after the break meant gaps appeared in Juve's acclaimed back-line.

Leonardo Bonucci (centre-back) - 7

Passed the ball with confidence in the early stages as Juve took the game to Real but was stretched to the limit when the Spanish side piled on the pressure. A brilliant clearance denied Gareth Bale a goal.

Andrea Barzagli (centre-back) - 7

Showed his class when he put in a perfectly-timed tackle on Isco, but could do little to stem the Real tide given the lack of protection from midfield.

Alex Sandro (left wing-back) - 8

Alex Sandro had Juventus' only shot in the second half
Alex Sandro had Juventus' only shot in the second half

Won his personal battle with Dani Carvajal down his flank and put in a steady supply of dangerous crosses - one of which led to Mario Mandzukic's goal.

Sami Khedira (centre midfield) - 5

His incisive one-touch passing helped Juve get on top early on, but he ran out of steam in the second half, when the Juve midfield was over-run.

Miralem Pjanic (centre midfield) - 5

Another Juve midfielder who started the game like a train but the speed of Real's interplay made him a passenger after the break.

Mario Mandzukic (attacking midfield) - 8

Mario Mandzukic scores
Mario Mandzukic became the third player to score in a Champions League final for two different teams

"One hell of a finish" is how Alan Shearer - accurately - described his goal on 5 live. Few overhead kicks can ever be hit so sweetly. When Juve were in the game, his clever runs helped created space for others.

Did you know:Mandzukic (Bayern Munich, Juventus) is the third player to score in a European Cup/CL final for two different teams after Velibor Vasovic (Partizan Belgrade, Ajax) & Cristiano Ronaldo (Man Utd, Real Madrid).

Paulo Dybala (attacking midfield) - 7

Paulo Dybala
Paulo Dybala was playing in his first Champions League final

Impressive when he ran at defenders with the ball, but had fewer and fewer opportunities to do that as the game progressed.

Gonzalo Higuain (centre-forward) - 6

Looked determined to end his losing streak in major finals when involved in Juve's early chances, but those opportunities soon dried up. Worked hard, but got no reward.

Substitutes

Juan Cuadradro (replaced Barzagli, 66 mins) Harshly sent off when Ramos made the most of an innocuous off-the-ball push. 4

Claudio Marchisio (replaced Pjanic, 70 mins) Brought on to try to give Juve a foothold in midfield, but that was a big ask in the circumstances. 5

Mario Lemina (replaced Dyabala, 77 mins) The game was lost by the time he appeared off the bench. 5

Real Madrid

Keylor Navas (goalkeeper) - 6

Made a brilliant early one-handed save from Pjanic. Criticised in some quarters for Mandzukic's goal, but beaten by the brilliance of the finish.

Dani Carvajal (right-back) - 7

His dual with Sandro was one of the highlights of the final. Had his hands full defensively but played a big part in his side's attacking play, setting up Ronaldo's opener.

Did you know:Carvajal has provided five assists in the CL this season, more than any other defender. (Next highest is Dani Alves, who currently has four).

Raphael Varane (centre-back) - 8

Looked rattled by Higuain in the early stages but had the Juve striker under almost complete control in the second half.

Sergio Ramos (centre-back) - 8

Sergio Ramos was involved in Juan Cuadrado's sending off
Sergio Ramos was involved in Juan Cuadrado's sending off

A typically eventful game - booked for a bout of wrestling in the first half, and got Cuadrado sent off late on with a spot of gamesmanship. In between, he showed what a good defender he is too.

Did you know:Sergio Ramos has been booked in all three of his Champions League final appearances.

Marcelo (left-back) - 8

Quiet at first, hugely influential by the end - summed up by the way he made his side's fourth goal with a brilliant run and cross.

Casemiro (defensive midfield) - 8

Helped his side gradually build a platform in midfield that allowed them to win the game. Got on the scoresheet too.

Luka Modric (centre midfield) - 9

Luka Modric won his third Champions League title
Luka Modric won his third Champions League title

Another stand-out performance. It was no coincidence that the more he saw of the ball, the more his side were on top.

Toni Kroos (centre midfield) - 8

Used the ball cleverly and helped set the tempo for Real's dominance.

Isco (attacking midfield) - 8

Isco won his third Champions League final with Real Madrid
Isco won his third Champions League final with Real Madrid

Seemed to be permanently on the move and sometimes his legs moved too fast for him. His movement was too much for Juve's midfield and defence.

Karim Benzema (centre-forward) - 7

Quiet by his standards, with only one blocked shot, but he worked hard and made space for others to exploit.

Cristiano Ronaldo (centre-forward) - 9 Man of the Match

Cristiano Ronaldo has now scored in more Champions League finals than any other player
Cristiano Ronaldo has now scored in more Champions League finals than any other player

Took centre-stage with two goals to help clinch his fourth Champions League triumph that took him above Lionel Messi as the top scorer in this season's tournament. Both were down to his movement and intelligence, and his innate finishing ability. His triumph caps another stellar season with another major club honour - his 20th, at the ground where he won his first with Manchester United in the 2004 FA Cup final.

Did you know:Cristiano Ronaldo has scored in three different Champions League finals (2017, 2014 and 2008), which is more than any other player. He also scored the winning penalty in last year's shoot-out win over Atletico Madrid.

Substitutes

Gareth Bale (replaced Benzema, 77 mins) - 6 Denied a goal on home territory by Bonucci's last-gasp clearance.

Marco Asensio (replaced Isco, 85 mins) - 7 A cool finish cemented his side's second-half dominance with a fourth goal.

Alvaro Morata (replaced Kroos, 90 mins) Not enough time to make an impact or earn a mark.

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