By Karolos Grohmann
Moscow: Real Madrid scored two goals in the final minutes with Karim Benzema and Casemiro to rescue a 2-2 draw at Borussia Moenchengladbach in their Champions League Group B match on Tuesday and snap a three-game losing run in the competition.
Marcus Thuram fired in for the lead in the 33rd minute and tapped in on the rebound in the 58th before Benzema cut the deficit in the 87th minute and Casemiro bagged a stoppage-time equaliser.
The 13-time European champions, who had lost their previous three games including a 3-2 defeat by Shakhtar Donetsk last week, earned their first point in the competition.
"We didn't think this would be such a drama," Real coach Zinedine Zidane said. "But my team showed that they know how to react.
"We always play to win and show the hunger to win. No way were we happy with the draw."
Gladbach, who also conceded a 90th-minute equaliser in their 2-2 draw at Inter Milan last week, are second in the group on two points, with Shakhtar top on four after a 0-0 draw with Inter.
Inter thrashed Shakhtar 5-0 in last season's Europa League semi-final in August but the Ukrainian champions proved to be a tougher nut to crack this time as their goalkeeper Anatoliy Trubin shone at the Olympic stadium in Kiev.
Zidane had been hoping to carry his side's momentum from their 3-1 weekend win over Barcelona in La Liga into the game.
Yet despite their confidence in possession, chances were few and far between.
The Foals struck on the break with Alassane Plea pouncing on a Toni Kroos mistake to set up Thuram for his first goal in the competition.
Real initially had more spark after the break and hit the woodwork when Asensio's 46th-minute shot was headed on to the crossbar.
UEFA Champions League matchday 2 results
- Lokomotiv Moscow 1 Bayern Munich 2
- Shakhtar Donetsk 0 Inter Milan 0
- Marseille 0 Manchester City 3
- Liverpool 2 Midtjylland 0
- Borussia Moenchengladbach 2 Real Madrid 2
- Atletico Madrid 3 RB Salzburg 2
- Porto 2 Olympiacos 0
- Atalanta 2 Ajax 2
Gladbach then struck against the run of play, with 23-year-old France youth international Thuram tapping in on the rebound after keeper Thibaut Courtois had pushed out a shot from Plea.
With the Germans thinking the game was already won, Real pulled a goal back when Casemiro headed on for Benzema, who became only the second player to score in 16 consecutive Champions League seasons.
Brazilian Casemiro then dashed Gladbach's hopes of a memorable win, driving the ball into the roof of the net in stoppage time.
"When you concede two late goals and drop the points it is not a good feeling," Gladbach coach Marco Rose said. "It came down to the quality of Real. We wanted to defend better until the end, but sometimes you need a little bit of luck and we didn't have that tonight."
Awer Mabil, the only Australian active in Europe's top club competition, had a tough night with Midtjylland. The Socceroo contributed to Diogo Jota's 55th-minute opener, which was iced by Mohamed Salah from the spot in injury time.
Former Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo, meanwhile, is expected to miss Wednesday's (Thursday AEDT) match against Barcelona after again testing positive to COVID-19.
Barcelona are also in turmoil after the loss to Real Madrid left them 12th in La Liga after five games. Club president Josep Maria Bartemou resigned on Tuesday ahead of a vote of no confidence after a petition demanding he step down was signed by more than 20,000 fans.
"It's a thought-out, serene, informed decision," Bartomeu, who was widely criticised after the Lionel Messi transfer saga, said in a televised speech.
Joshua Kimmich volleyed in a 79th-minute winner on Tuesday as Bayern Munich rattled past hosts Lokomotiv Moscow 2-1 in their Group A match to extend their winning run in the competition to 13 consecutive games.
Leon Goretzka headed them in front in the 13th minute but they squandered a string of chances to double their lead and also hit the post before Anton Miranchuk punished their wastefulness following a quick break from Ze Luis.
Bayern, winners of five trophies in 2020, are top of their group on six points, after also beating Atletico Madrid 4-0 last week in their opener.
The Russians, who have one point, had the first good chance through Fyodor Smolov's third-minute header but Bayern's Goretzka did better, heading in a perfect Benjamin Pavard cross.
Kingsley Coman then struck the foot of the post 10 minutes later after an identical assist from Pavard with the Russians clearly struggling with Bayern's pace down the wings.
Kimmich should have done better when he fired at a defender from two metres out early in the second half but the midfielder made amends 11 minutes from the end.
With Lokomotiv pressing for a second goal, he picked up the ball on the edge of the box and with his back to the goal, flicked it up, pivoted and volleyed in the winner.
Bayern next visit Salzburg while Lokomotiv, who have lost six of their last seven home games in the Champions League group stage, host Atletico, who beat RB Salzburg 3-2.