Lunin saves, Rudiger scores: Ancelotti's Real Madrid eliminates champions City on penalties


By John

Manchester City-Real Madrid 4-5

A game of chess, attack against defense, with Pep Guardiola and Carlo Ancelotti moving their prized pieces on the lawn of the Etihad Stadium. The 1-1 in the 90' ​​(Rodrygo in the 12th minute, De Bruyne in the 31st minute of the second half) does not change in extra time. From 11 meters Real won 5-4 and goes to the semi-final of the Champions League, where they will face Bayern Munich. After the 3-3 draw in the first leg, the Romagna coach had indicated the first 20' as the most at risk. Instead, it was his Real who were the first to shake Ederson's goal with a searing counterattack which, already in the 12th minute, led to Rodrygo scoring, served by Vinicius' cross. But City's response was immediate and in the 19th minute Haaland hit the crossbar with a header. Then Bernardo Silva misses the tap-in. The pace of the match is syncopated, pauses alternate with bursts in which the ball travels at impressive speed.

In the 27th minute there is work for Lunin, forced to take off to intercept De Bruyne's missile. Real closes in and starts the counterattack, favored by City's offensive imbalance. Who relies on suffocating pressing, putting opposing setters to the test. So much pressure doesn't produce an equalizer and when Orsato blows the whistle, Real goes into the break with the lead. There are no changes and we start again with the same score: City tarantulato and Real in apnea. Nacho also has to dribble past Lunin to get ahead of Haaland, then Foden tries, but the conclusion is weak. City produces maximum effort and Real is now constantly crushed on the edges of their own area. Grealish tries again, but Lunin blocks in two stages. Guardiola calls him back and Doku enters. And it was he who, in the 31st minute, fed De Bruyne the ball which the Belgian converted to make it 1-1. Ancelotti's response is Modric in place of Kroos, then Brahim Diaz for Rodrygo. De Bruyne has the opportunity to take the lead, but this time his left foot is high. It's time for extra time and Haaland, still without a goal against Real, gives way to Alvarez. He continues the siege of Lunin's gate, but with less clarity. After yet another shot Vinicus comes out exhausted, Lucas Vazquez comes in. Then cramps stop Carvajal, replaced by Militao. Fresh forces also for Guardiola, with Stones and Kovacic for Akanji and De Bruyne. After 120 very intense minutes (not counting the various recoveries) City and Real, exhausted, had to rely on penalties. In the Citizens Bernardo Silva and Kovacic make mistakes, in the Blancos only Modric and Ancelotti are in the semi-finals.