AFTER a tense 0-0 draw at the Etihad stadium on April 26, Man City’s first-ever Champions League semi-final win is still within grasp. Real Madrid, with their star player Ronaldo sat on the bench, found it hard to triumph after a couple of missed opportunities.
Goalkeeper Joe Hart was deservedly man of the match and managed to keep Manchester City’s hopes of reaching their first Champions League final alive. Hart had two superb late saves that meant the first leg of the semi-final finished goalless.
Real Madrid’s star Cristiano Ronaldo spent the match looking tense from the benches due to a thigh injury. A slightly cautious Real side offered little goal threat until the closing stages, when they ramped up the shots at goal.
Jese headed in a shot at goal against the bar for Real in the last 20 minutes, before Hart blocked Casemiro and Pepe from shots at goal.
Goalkeeper Keylor Navas tipped over Kevin de Bruyne’s dipping free kick in stoppage time, which was the closest City came to a goal.
The news that Ronaldo’s thigh muscle was considered too tight for him to play was clearly a massive boost for City, of which they didn’t manage to make the most of, and because they were unable to score at home, City will not have to take the lead back when playing at Bernabeu.
Playing his first match in England since the £85m move to Real Madrid from Spurs in 2013, Gareth Bale wasn’t able to make up for the loss of Ronaldo in the team although made a couple of nice runs which amounted to nothing. He did have a free kick which was on target but blocked by the opposing wall.
Manchester City were certainly no more forward in their approach and weren’t helped when David Silva was forced off before half time with an injury. Former Atletico Madrid striker Aguero did have a shot at goal. He has now played Real Madrid 13 times and never managed to beat them.
Wednesday May 4 will see Aguero have another attempt to beat them at home.
With Manchester City now the only British club in the Champion’s League, although they didn’t allow Real a goal, they have a huge challenge in front of them if they are to reach the final in Milan on May 28.
Cristiano Ronaldo was tense on the bench. © Twitter