Holders Real Madrid have qualified for a third successive UEFA Champions League (UCL) final after they held off Bayern Munich 4-3 on aggregate in their semifinal tie.
Zinedine Zidane’s team had won the away leg 2-1 but had to endure a torrid start following a third minute strike from Joshua Kimmich who also scored in the first leg clash at the Allianz Arena on Wednesday.
Real Madrid needed their big players to stand up and be counted after the early setback and it was much maligned French striker Karim Benzema who answered his critics by bailing his side out.
He equalised for the Los Merengues on 11 minutes before capitalising on a mistake from Bayern Munich goalkeeper Sven Ulreich to put the hosts 2-1 up just after the halftime interval.
On-loan Real Madrid forward James Rodriguez then equalised for Bayern against his parent club to put the scores at 2-2 and 4-3 on aggregate in favour of Real Madrid.
The goal reinvigorated Bayern Munich but the German champions failed to get the all important goal that would have taken them to a first final in five years.
Real Madrid held on to qualify for a third successive final to become the first team to achieve this since the Bayern team of the 70s.
Zinedine Zidane and his wards will now face either Liverpool or AS Roma in the final with the Reds leading 5-2 ahead of the second leg match scheduled for the Stadio Olimpico on Wednesday night.