UEFA Champions League: Benzema is a world in itself – sport

On the way to the catacombs of Manchester City Stadium, below the stand named after Colin Bell, are two plaques that record milestones in the club’s history. Of course, the arrival of Josep Guardiola as coach in 2016. Since then, City have spent over €1 billion on new players – and have also won ten trophies. But Guardiola is still chasing this trophy: the Champions League trophy, which he won only with FC Barcelona so far.

On Wednesday he got a little closer to his dream: in a match full of dramatic jumps and turns, his team beat record champion, Real Madrid – 4: 3. The return leg will take place in Madrid next week, on the stage of this year’s specialty in hilarious intrigue.

Perhaps there is no team in the world that walks on the edge of the abyss better than Real Madrid. There is no greater sin than to underestimate this team. Nobody knows that better than Guardiola, who has been preaching the same to his team. These madriles are the ones who grew up from the top of the summit, I rushed into them. similar. He showed them videos of the miraculous victories over Paris Saint-Germain and Chelsea.

And now his players know firsthand what it means when someone says there are no proven facts when the European bet total is on the line and Real Madrid is all over the field.

When the first inscription on the headstone was commissioned for Madrid, City goalkeeper Ederson gave oral resuscitation

However, in the beginning, it took less than two minutes for Manchester City in the lead: Riyad Mahrez moved from the right wing to half the space and hit the ball into the penalty area because no one attacked him. Kevin De Bruyne hit the ball and headed the ball over the line as goalkeeper Danny Carvajal moved more timidly than a Continental tourist in front of a rowdy pub in an English pub. His Belgian teammate, Thibaut Courtois, had no chance. Nine minutes later, it was De Bruyne who provided the decisive pass and passed it to Gabriel Jesus, who managed to wrap around former Bayern Munich player David Alaba in the penalty area. 2: 0 after eleven minutes! But when the first inscriptions of Madrid’s tombstones were commissioned, City goalkeeper Ederson performed oral resuscitation.

With a few risky passes, he made his teammates sweat – and put Real Madrid back in the game. A scene from the 26th minute was representative of this. Ederson tried to pass Robin Dias into his own penalty area, Benzema rushed between them and there was such a huge mess that Dias hit the ball at the inner post of his own goal. Then City committed a fatal sin: Guardiola’s team missed two great chances through Mahrez and Foden (26/29). After that we had to watch the Real Madrid goal. Through Karim Benzema, than others, the Frenchman directed a superb cross pass from Real defender Ferland Mendy with a technical shot into the net.

The decision on who will participate in the Saint-Denis final has been postponed

After that, the match entered a protracted, frantic phase, which suited Real Madrid more than the English. Guardiola had to replace John Stones with an injury – and bring in Brazilian veteran Fernandinho (35th), which we’ll talk about later. There was a series of well-thought-out moves, quite a few great moves on the lips of the spectators, another great chance for Mahrez (48th) – and finally, City’s third goal. The old Fernandinho advanced from the right to the base line and hit an accurate cross to Phil Foden, who headed it from close range to make it 3-1 (53). But that wasn’t the last word either. never. Just two minutes later, Vinicius crossed the aforementioned Madrid’s left flank Fernandinho, pulled over half the field and smashed the ball into the net to make the score 3-2.

Just when the match looked a little quiet did City score to make it 4:2. Toni Kroos, who often seemed overwhelmed with defensive tasks, mistook City’s left-back Zinchenko on the edge of the area, but the referee allowed the distinction. The ball came to Bernardo Silva who hit it dry – and he shot into the upper left corner from a distance of 14 metres. Is it all over with 4:2? no! City center back Aymeric Laporte crossed from the sky into his team’s penalty area and awarded a penalty that Karim Benzema made to make it 4-3. With his own elegance, that is to say: by placing it under the crossbar in the style of Antonin Panenka, when goalkeeper Ederson was already flying into his left corner. And if there was no one or another player, and above all: the grateful applause of the loyal crowd, then this would have been a very worthy end to a wonderful football evening. However, the decision on who would move to the Saint-Denis final was postponed.

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