Pep’s team passes 2-1 also in Germany: the 20-year-old Englishman is still a great protagonist
Finally the much coveted step. But how much suffering. Manchester City reaches the Champions League semi-final for the first time since Guardiola has led them. After the 2-1 of the first leg, the Citizens impose themselves, with the same result, also at home to Dortmund and go through the round. With Pep on the bench, the English had been eliminated three times in a row in the quarterfinals, while in 2016-17 they had even gone out in the round of 16. Borussia Dortmund took the lead in the 15 ‘with Bellingham, before being reached by Mahrez’s goal (from a penalty caused by Emre Can) in the 55th minute and capitulated with Foden’s goal in the 75th minute. In the semifinals it will be City-Psg.
Without Sancho and Moukoko, Terzic lines up his team with the 4-3-3 with Reus and the 19-year-old Knauff next to Haaland (only bench for Reyna, Hazard and Brandt). Guardiola responds with Foden, Silva and Mahrez. The first shot, on 7 ‘, is from the hosts: Dahoud, from 20 meters, kicks, but Ederson is careful and blocks without problems. At 15 ‘the advantage: Can serves Haaland on the race who is good at serving Dahoud in tow. His shot was rejected but the ball landed on Bellingham’s feet who managed to put it under the crossroads. Dortmund is not satisfied and continues to attack: in the 18 ‘Ederson saves a header from Akanji, but from that moment the City shakes. At 25 ‘, after a nice triangulation, De Bruyne hits the crossbar, the first to arrive on the rebound is Bernardo Silva who, however, misses the door. At 35 ‘another opportunity: Foden is thrown deep, Mahrez serves who beats Hitz, but Bellingham saves at the last.
In the second half City continues to take possession in the Dortmund trocar and, almost by chance, finds a draw: on a harmless cross from Foden, Can, in an uncoordinated manner, hits the ball head and hand at the same time. For the referee it is a penalty and Mahrez scores 1-1. Dortmund remained shy and only reappeared on Ederson’s side in the 69th minute when Hummels, on a corner action, headed for 2-1. In the 74th minute it was De Bruyne who centered from the left, jumped a couple of opponents and kicked towards Dortmund’s goal, but Hitz was reactive and saved for a corner. Just from the developments of the corner comes the 2-1: Foden kicks with power at the near post, Hitz touches, the ball hits the wood and ends up in the goal. The advantage of the City effectively closes the game, with Haaland, evanescent throughout the game, who kicks from the edge but does not frame. This is the only Giallonera opportunity in the final minutes that, at least those, for the City run without particular risks. Guardiola, five years after the last time (at the time he was at Bayern) returns to the Champions League semifinal. But his City with suffered far more than Dortmund’s 4-2 aggregate draw might suggest.
April 14, 2021 (change April 14, 2021 | 23:03)
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