Bayern Munich star Manuel Neuer criticised by Steve McManaman after Vinicius Junior’s Real Madrid goal | Football

Vinicius Junior opened the scoring for Real Madrid against Bayern Munich (Picture: Getty)

Steve McManaman pointed the finger at a ‘flat-footed’ Manuel Neuer for failing to ‘come out strong’ after Vinicius Junior opened the scoring in Real Madrid’s Champions League semi-final with Bayern Munich.

Hosts Bayern dominated possession in the opening stages of the first leg and Leroy Sane blazed an early opportunity over the bar before England captain Harry Kane missed the target with a speculative effort from range.

But the visitors soaked up the pressure and drew first blood as Toni Kroos split Bayern’s defence with a sublime through ball to find Vinicius, who made no mistake to score his 20th goal of the season.

Remarkably, Vinicius Junior’s strike in the 24th minute means the Brazilian has netted in the Champions League semi-finals in three consecutive seasons and McManaman was full of praise for the forward’s run and finish.

However, the former Real Madrid, Liverpool and England winger, providing co-commentary for TNT Sports, felt Bayern goalkeeper Neuer was largely at fault, with the Germany international rooted to the spot as Kroos found Vinicius Junior.

‘I’d question the goalkeeper. Toni Kroos, space galore! The goalie comes then stops. Does he commit, should he commit?’ McManaman said.

‘This was beautiful, though. What a ball through the line from Toni Kroos and Vinicius Junior is onto it.

Manuel Neuer

Neuer was ‘flat-footed’, according to ex-Real Madrid star McManaman (Picture: Getty)

‘Neuer is flat-footed and Vinicius opened the body up and rolled it past the goalkeeper.

‘He was already preparing himself, Vinicius Junior, how he shapes his body.

‘I thought Neuer should have come and come out strong, right out to his [Vinicius Junior’s] feet.’

McManaman said the home team would have to be ‘careful’ after being exposed at the back for Vinicius’ goal.

‘Real Madrid are dangerous like that. Once they go, you can’t stop them,’ he added.

‘That ball over the top, Real Madrid are two on one. Vinicius Junior and Bellingham on Kim Min-jae.

‘That’s why they have to be careful, Bayern. Yes, they want to get back into the game, but they can’t leave themselves open at the back.’


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