Manchester – The Manchester City footballers defeated Real Madrid 4: 3 in the opening semifinals of the Champions League. “Citizens” led by two goals in an attractive duel between the leaders of the English and Spanish leagues, but the guests kept their hopes for revenge thanks to the two best hits of the new top scorer of the competition this season, Karim Benzema. Bernardo Silva scored the winning goal in the 74th minute. Retaliation in Madrid is scheduled for Wednesday, May 4. The second finalist will come from the Liverpool – Villarreal duo.
The “Citizens” entered the double match with the fastest goal in the Champions League in club history. After 93 seconds, De Bruyne ran into the center of Mahriz’s center and headed the ball behind the back of his teammate from the Belgian national team, Courtoise.
In the 11th minute, De Bruyne found Jesus in the penalty area and the Brazilian striker followed up with a four-goal performance from Saturday’s league duel with Watford (5: 1). Real, on the other hand, set a negative record in the beginning, as he never collected two goals in the Champions League so quickly.
The “White Ballet” did not catch up with the home team for the first half hour, but Foden and Mahriz finished renumbering with bullets right next to the gate. “We were very, very good for the first twenty minutes. We pressed and controlled the game very well,” midfielder Silva praised his team in an interview with BT Sport.
After an unused chance, Manchester managed a penalty in the 33rd minute in the form of the premier collected goal in the elimination phase of this year. Benzema found Mendy center on the left hand side and sent a ball into the net. In his 600th match for the club, the French gunner recorded the 40th competition hit of the season, which was the last time Cristian Ronald managed to do so in a white jersey in 2017/18.
The mutually offensive performance continued in the second half. Shortly after the break, Mahriz hit the bar and kicked Foden’s shot out of Carvajal’s defender from the goal line. The English national team member Foden finally got after two big chances, in the 53rd minute he pushed his head up close. But then Vinícius Júnior deceived the author of Fernandinho’s previous goal assistance and ended the solo over half the field with an accurate shot on the back post.
In the 74th minute, Silva took advantage of the provided foul and surprised Courtois with an elusive shot on the front post. Immediately, Mahriz burned another unloaded chance, and so the opponent ended the wild match with a goal. After Laport’s hand in the lime, he set the ball to the Benzema penalty and “scored” in the middle of the goal to give the 14th shot in this year’s Champions League. He became independent at the head of the shooters ahead of Robert Lewandowski of Bayern Munich.
“I always say that if you don’t face the penalty, you can’t miss any of it. It’s just about your head. I believe in my abilities, so I took the penalty and kicked it this way,” Benzema told Movistar Plus. The 34-year-old gunner did not change two penalties in the last league match with Pamplona.
Seven goals in the semifinal match of the Champions League fell for the third time in history. The “Citizens” have tilted a balanced balance to their side, winning third of seven duels with Real in two draws and two losses.
“It’s a pity we didn’t maintain a two-goal lead in revenge. But that’s what the Champions League is about, you play against the best teams in the world,” added Silva, who was named the best player in the match.
Introductory semifinal match of the Champions League:
Manchester City – Real Madrid 4:3 (2:1)
Goals: 2. De Bruyne, 11. Jesus, 53. Foden, 74. Silva – 33. and 82. z pen. Benzema, 55. Vinícius Júnior. Judges: Kovács – Marinescu, Artene (all Rum.) – Fritz (video, Germany). ZK: Fernandinho – Nacho. Attendance: 55,097.
Manchester City: Ederson – Stones (36th Fernandinho), Dias, Laporte, Zinchenko – De Bruyne, Rodri, Silva – Mahriz, Jesus (83rd Sterling), Foden. Coach: Guardiola.
Real Madrid: Courtois – Carvajal, Militao, Alaba (46. Nacho), Mendy – Valverde, Kroos, Modrič (79. Ceballos) – Rodrygo (70. Camavinga), Benzema, Vinícius Júnior (88. Asensio). Coach: Ancelotti.
Source: České noviny – sport by www.ceskenoviny.cz.
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