Bayern Munich loan star James Rodriguez congratulated Real Madrid on beating his adopted side in the Champions League semi-final on Tuesday, as he also defended Sven Ulreich, whose error ultimately cost the Bavarians the chance at making the final.
While many, including Bayern manager Jupp Heynckes, claimed Bayern were the better side over the two legs, James insisted Real Madrid produced ‘good things’.
The match at the Santiago Bernabeu finished 2-2, but with Bayern trailing from the first leg they were eliminated on aggregate goals. Bayern dominated for large spells of the game but some excellent goalkeeping for Keylor Navas and some wayward shooting cost the German side on the night.
To make matters worse stand-in goalkeeper Ulreich gifted a second goal to the hosts as he appeared to attempt to pick up a back pass from his own defender. Realising his own mistake, Ulreich tried to adjust his shape in time to clear the ball with his feet but could only watch as it rolled harmlessly past him offering an open goal up to Karim Benzema.
“You don’t have to blame the goalkeeper, he has saved us a lot. We have made costly errors in the first leg as well as here,” James said via AS.
James who is currently on a two-year loan at Bayern from Madrid would be on hand with the equaliser but it would prove in vain. It’s unusual for a player to play let alone score against their parent club but it does happen in the Champions League.
It’s not even the first time Bayern have profited from the unusual circumstances with Kingsley Coman scoring against Juventus whilst on loan from the Turin side in 2016.
James who refused to celebrate his goal was on hand to discuss the tie and parent club in his post-match interview, as he explained to El Chiringuito: “I did not celebrate my goal for the 3 years I played here and I was happy.”
The Colombian also praised Madrid and their performances across both legs, adding: “I think we had a good game, this time it didn’t come off. If Madrid went through it’s because they did good things.
“We have to be calm and think about the German Cup final.”