Real Madrid knock Liverpool out of Champions League
...Foden fires Man City into Champions League semi-finalsThursday, April 15, 2021
LIVERPOOL, United Kingdom (AFP) — Liverpool were left to rue a host of missed chances as Real Madrid held out for a 0-0 draw at Anfield to progress to the semi-finals of the Champions League 3-1 on aggregate yesterday.
Mohamed Salah and Georginio Wijnaldum were guilty of wasting glorious opportunities to get Jurgen Klopp's men back into the tie as they failed to replicate a remarkable recovery from 3-0 down to beat Barcelona 4-3 on aggregate at the semi-final stage two years ago.
Madrid were far from their best, but did not need to be to set up a semi-final clash with Chelsea as Los Blancos extended their unbeaten run in all competitions to 14 games.
Klopp admitted before the game that his players had to create their own atmosphere without the cauldron of noise that has accompanied famous European nights at Anfield in the past.
Despite the empty stands due to the novel coronavirus restrictions, Liverpool flew out of the traps and should have halved their deficit within two minutes.
Sadio Mane knocked Ozan Kabak's long ball perfectly into the path of Salah, but Liverpool's one consistent performer in the final third this season fired straight at Thibaut Courtois.
Klopp surprisingly repeated his decision from the first leg to leave Thiago Alcantara on the bench with James Milner, this time, taking the place of the Spanish international in midfield.
Milner made his presence felt within a minute with a late lunge on Karim Benzema and nearly inflicted a different type of damage on Madrid 10 minutes in when his long-range effort forced Courtois into another fine save.
Real's fine run has propelled them back into contention to defend their La Liga title and claim a 14th crown as European champions.
The closest Madrid came to scoring was when Kabak inadvertently deflected a Benzema cross off the outside of his own post with Alisson Becker wrong-footed.
Meanwhile, in Dortmund, Germany, Manchester City set up a blockbuster Champions League semi-final against Paris Saint-Germain as Phil Foden's second-half winner sealed a 2-1 victory at Borussia to send the Premier League leaders through 4-2 on aggregate.
England midfielder Jude Bellingham gave Dortmund an early lead, but a second-half Riyad Mahrez penalty and Foden's powerful strike moved City into the last four of Europe's top club competition for the second time.
Having also scored the 90th-minute winner to give City a 2-1 victory in last week's first leg in Manchester, England, international Foden again broke Dortmund hearts.
City had bowed out at the quarter-final stage in each of the last three seasons, and had to come from behind at Signal Iduna Park as Dortmund shrugged off their indifferent Bundesliga form to take the lead on 15 minutes.
Four days after scoring his first Bundesliga goal, Bellingham also hit the back of the net for the first time in the Champions League.
After Mahmoud Dahoud fired straight at City goalkeeper Ederson with six minutes gone, Dortmund went ahead with their next clear chance.
Emre Can's long ball found Erling Braut Haaland in the area, the Norwegian squaring for Dahoud, and although his shot was saved, Bellingham curled the rebound beyond Ederson.
At 17 years and 289 days, Bellingham became the second youngest goalscorer in the knockout stages of the Champions League behind Bojan Krkic, who was 72 days younger when he scored in the quarter-finals for Barcelona in 2008
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