Kevin De Bruyne Strike Keeps Manchester City UEFA Title Hopes Alive
The UEFA Champions League entered the Semi Final stage with Manchester City drawn against the defending champions Real Madrid. The English Premier League giants had a point to prove, which Kevin De Bruyne would later illustrate as they matched into Santiago Bernabéu Stadium.
City hoped to secure a straight win which would have given them an away advantage over the “Los Blancos,” The game kicked off at 15:00 ET, with Pep Guardiola and Carlo Ancelotti fielding their strongest squads.
Manchester City had Erling Haaland and Kevin De Bruyne as the men to watch, while Real Madrid’s Vinicius Junior and Benzema were the lethal strikers whos record speak for them selves.
Both players showcased their class with Benzema and Vini causing problems for the city defense. However, Antionio Rudiger pocketed Erling Haaland, denying him several scoring opportunities.
Anceloti was happy with Rudigers performance and said “Rudiger against Haaland did really well. We are satisfied, sometimes the result doesn’t give you the credit.” He added: “You have to stay calm and keep the position defensively. Not go crazy pressing.”
The VINI Junior Electric Strike
It was until the 36th minute when a Camavinga assist to Vinicious Junior gave Madrid a lead. The electrifying shot sent to the farthest corner of the goal from the 18 yard point saw Ederson dive to save with no success.
Real Madrid’s fans rose from their seats as they celebrated the first goal from their all time scorer. Vinicious still kept City’s defense under test as he made far-post strikes.
It was his 23 third goal of the season and his best performance so far. Last season, Vinicious scored 22 goals and was named in the La Liga and Champions League Team of the Seasons.
Vinicious has matured under coach Anceloti having a starting place before Eden Hazard who was a Chelsea legend. Besides the 23 goals, the player has had 22 assists in all the teams competitions.
In last year’s Champions League final, as Madrid played against Liverpool, Vinicious scored the winning goal. And his form has skyrocketed since then.
Kevin De Bruyne Equalizer
Kevin De Bruyne has been Guardiola’s favorite and he proved it yet again by earning the team a goal leading to a draw. It was a similar spectacular strike to what Vinicius Junior had with his earlier goal.
The goal could be a deciding factor as ManCity set to play at home in their second leg. Minutes after the goal, Mancity took control of the game with many passes completed.
The stunning equalizer has however been a point of discussion as Carlo Anceloti maintains that it was not supposed to count. Anceloti was not happy as the referee failed to consult VAR. He felt that Barnado Silva picked the ball over the touchline.
In the end, the referee Artur Soares Dias showed Anceloti a yellow card for protesting the goal by entering the field.
Second Leg Overview and A Possible Winner
The proper appetite for the second leg is shaping up, and Real Madrid hopes of progressing into the finals might prove futile after an equalizer by De Bruyne denied them a home-win advantage.
Will Manchester City take advantage of the fan-filled home ground to knock Madrid out of the league? Manchester City’s home run has always been excellent and hopefully they might advance to the finals and meet the winners between AC Millam and Inter Milan.
Could AC Milan or Inter Milan break the norm and lift the UEFA Cup? The coming games will reveal the truth.
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