Real Madrid survive Manchester City’s offensive avalanche (4-3)

BarcelonaHow hard it is to drown Real Madrid. You can spend a few minutes underwater with your hands on your neck and get up again and again. PSG and Chelsea did not succeed. Now it’s Guardiola’s turn, who will have to return to the Santiago Bernabeu, where he has been so scared for years, to try to take City to their second Champions League final defending a result that is too short, for the stage seen at the Etihad ( 4-3). The City is like that, like a Bohemian crystal. Beautiful, but too fragile on defense. Guardiola’s team put football in it, but Madrid have more lives than a cat. It doesn’t matter the statistics or the merits. They cling to life with their fingernails.

The scenery was hard to improve. Manchester City, as rich as PSG but determined to build an author project with their money thanks to Guardiola. And in front, Real Madrid. The ogre who has caused so many nightmares in the Old Continent, breaking the hearts of so many clubs, so many players and so many fans every time he gets up to surprise, when he seemed dead. A script in the background not surprising, as Madrid always does the same. Have a bad time but come out alive. Now, watching the matches, it is always difficult to understand how the Madrid fans do it so as not to sink. In Manchester, City could have scored after a start in the match in which they scored two goals, but could have done more. First, Mahrez on the right passed the ball to De Bryune, specialists in scoring entering from the second line. Then Gabriel Jesus mocking Alaba. Madrid’s defense was buttery, but City had many casualties on defense. And he plays with fire. When Madrid managed to get close to Ederson, he bit with a goal from Benzema. He had to be the lifeguard of a Madrid that also took advantage of the double face of the English in the second half. After another avalanche of local play, with the 3-1 work of Foden, Vini Junior mocked a Fernandinho too slow to cross midfield and make it 3-2. City put football on, but Madrid come to life like a shipwreck in the lifeboat. City had to generate many chances to score, few in Madrid. Rodri’s class gave control to the team of a Guardiola who lost Stones to injury. The Santpedor coach, who knows Madrid well enough, knew he needed to score more goals, but it was a double-edged sword, as attacking one after the other allowed Ancelotti’s men to do the opposite.

Benzema, to the rescue of Madrid

But Guardiola is stubborn. It hasn’t changed before and won’t change now. Others would have been frightened by the races of Vinicius and Benzema, but he ordered them to continue attacking. If you have to fall, do it with your head held high, defending an idea. And the prize came when Kroos made a clear foul on Zinchenko. Kovacs, the referee had no doubts and he gave a penalty in favor of Bernardo Silva. They stood still, like statues of salt. And the Portuguese sent the ball to the corner and made a fan dream that he ended up biting his nails when Laporte made a controversial penalty (he touched with his hand, but before the ball had hit his head) that Benzema made it 4-3 with Panenka-style shooting. A shot as delightful as a Manchester City match that did enough to score, but, like other times, he missed a goal, and his hair was pulled out remembering the mistakes of Mahrez or Foden alone against Courtois. And he looked like he was doing four, but with Mahrez’s hips and the pace of Gabriel Jesus, he was fed up with wasting goal opportunities. A sin you can’t commit, against Madrid. The Santiago Bernabéu will rule. You have to suffer to be a finalist.

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