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Legia surprise Madrid in six-goal thriller

Group F stragglers Legia Warszawa came from two down to the verge of a famous victory, before a late Real Madrid equaliser forced them to settle for a 3-3 draw.

Matchday 4 highlights: Legia 3-3 Real Madrid

Legia Warszawa and Real Madrid played out a six-goal thriller as the spoils were shared in their UEFA Champions League Group F encounter.

Gareth Bale's stunning effort in the first minute got the ball rolling before Karim Benzema doubled the visitors' lead. However, Vadis Odjidja halved the deficit with a wonderful solo goal of his own just before the break as the home side finished the half the stronger.

Miroslav Radović improbably drew the Polish champions level in the second half, with Thibault Moulin then ensuring they were in dreamland with a wonderful finish seven minutes from the end. But Mateo Kovačić quickly restored parity and Lucas Vázquez hit the bar in stoppage time as, ultimately, Legia clung on for a famous point.

Key player: Gareth Bale (Madrid)
The No11 signed a new deal on Monday and celebrated it in the best way possible. His sensational strike before the first minute had elapsed got the ball rolling for his team, and it was the Welshman's run and unselfish pass that teed up Benzema for Madrid's second. Later on, with the European champions pegged back, Bale became the driving force going forward.

Zidane gamble backfires
Setting up with a lesser-seen 4-2-4 system, Madrid's tactics were all-out attack and given they raced into a 2-0 lead, that appeared to be paying dividends. However, the problem with pushing up is that the defence is left exposed and it was a problem that was only exacerbated by their lack of numbers in midfield. In the end Madrid needed a late show to avoid an upset and it was no more than Legia deserved.

Legia's Odjidja comes good
Legia's big plus in recent weeks has been Odjidja. The 27-year-old former Belgian international midfielder, who joined from Norwich in the summer, provoked some specticism with his performances at the beginning of the season. But step by step he has rediscovered his form and tonight he did really well, scoring perhaps the best goal of his career. Curiously he had produced a very similar individual effort in the Polish Ekstraklasa a short while back, only on that occasion he hit the crossbar. So this one was worth the wait. Fancy getting a goal like that against Madrid.

Reporters' views

Piotr Koźmiński, Legia (@UEFAcomPiotrK)
Legia were hammered 6-0 here by Borussia Dortmund on matchday one, and some pessimists were afraid the same would happen against Madrid. However, there is clearly a big difference between the Legia of mid-September and this current version. Since changing coach, replacing Besnik Hasi with Jacek Magiera, they have gradually improved. That said, virtually nobody in Poland, including Legia's own fans, expected such a good display. The ensuing draw offers yet more proof that the Warsaw club are going into the right direction.

Joe Walker, Madrid (@UEFAcomJoeW)
Like in the meeting between these sides at the Bernabéu two weeks ago, Legia had a game plan to hit Madrid on the counter and this time round it worked to perfection. Odjidja danced around the Blancos back line far too easily, while Radović had too much space to level from the edge of the box. When Moulin subsequently scored, you feared the worst but in the end Madrid's fighting spirit saw them battle back for a point. Work to be done for Zidane, then, especially at the back.

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