May 10, 2021

Kroos won’t watch rest of Champions League after Real Madrid elimination but refuses to blame Varane

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The German midfielder has admitted that the Blancos were the masters of their own downfall against Manchester City

Toni Kroos says he won’t watch the rest of the Champions League after Real Madrid‘s elimination, but has refused to blame Raphael Varane for the club’s early exit.

Madrid travelled to Etihad Stadium on Friday night looking to overturn a 2-1 first-leg deficit, after being stunned by City at the Bernabeu back in February.

Zinedine Zidane’s side got off to the worst possible start, as Varane was caught dawdling on the ball in his own box by Gabriel Jesus, who nipped in and set up Raheem Sterling to tap into an empty net with only nine minutes on the clock.

The Blancos got themselves back into the game when Karim Benzema headed home a Rodrygo cross just before the half-hour mark, but they were unable to build any momentum after the equaliser.

City pushed hardest for the winning goal, and were eventually rewarded midway through the second half when Jesus capitalised on another Varane error to divert the ball into the net past flailing Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois.

Pep Guardiola’s men ultimately progressed to the quarter-finals 4-2 on aggregate, with Varane taking full responsibility for the La Liga champions’ defeat in his post-match interview.

Kroos admitted that Madrid were well below their best against the Premier League outfit, but refused to blame his team-mate for the final result.

“We didn’t play a good first half and helped them with the goals,” the German midfielder told reporters. “After that, it will, of course, be difficult to turn the game around.

“Rapha played an outstanding season. There are no accusations.”

The Madrid playmaker went on to insist that he won’t be following the competition into the latter rounds, with his mind already on a summer holiday after a long season.

Kroos added: “I want to win every title that is possible. So at the moment, I’m disappointed. Then I’m looking forward to a holiday. I probably won’t watch the rest of the competition.”

City can now look forward to a last-eight tie against Lyon, who knocked out Juventus on away goals despite being beaten 2-1 at the Allianz Stadium, with the tournament set to reach its conclusion in a straight knockout format in Lisbon.