Real Madrid beat Man City in shootout to reach UCL semifinals


ESPN FC pundits rip Erling Haaland's performance vs. Real Madrid

Ale Moreno and Stewart Robson pick apart Erling Haaland's performance in Manchester City's UCL defeat vs. Real Madrid.

Real Madrid advanced to the semifinals of the Champions League after beating Manchester City 4-3 on penalties at Etihad Stadium on Wednesday.

Antonio Rüdiger struck the decisive spot kick after the game had finished 1-1 through extra time and 4-4 on aggregate.

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Bernardo Silva and Mateo Kovacic saw their penalties saved in the shootout as defending champions City were eliminated by record 14-time champions Madrid.

Rodrygo fired Madrid ahead in the 12th minute with a twice-taken effort from close range to beat City goalkeeper Éderson on the rebound.

City dominated from then on with Kevin De Bruyne leveling in the 76th by lifting a shot high into the net from close range.

City immediately took advantage in the shootout after Julián Álvarez converted his opening penalty and Luka Modric's effort was saved.

But Madrid goalkeeper Andriy Lunin then saved successive spot kicks from Silva and Kovacic to swing the balance in the visitors' favor. Silva's attempt was right down the middle and easily caught chest-high by Lunin.

Defeat ended City's bid to become the first English team to win back-to-back Champions League titles and their pursuit of successive trebles. City are still challenging for the Premier League title and the FA Cup.

Victory for Madrid keeps the Spanish giant in the hunt for a record-extending 15th European Cup. It also saw them advance to the semifinals for the fourth year in row -- denying City the chance to emulate that feat.

Real Madrid players celebrate after beating Manchester City in the Champions League quarterfinals.
Real Madrid players celebrate after beating Manchester City in the Champions League quarterfinals.
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But Madrid had to dig in to get past Pep Guardiola's team, which dominated the majority of the match without managing to add to De Bruyne's second-half goal.

This was the third straight season Madrid and City have clashed in European club soccer's most demanding competition.

It has become a classic rivalry with the winner of their meetings going on to win the competition in each of the past two years -- a measure of the fine margins between the teams that they entered this match with nothing separating them after drawing the first leg.

Madrid were out for revenge after being routed 4-0 in the semifinals last year. Despite coming up against the defending champions and tournament favorites, Jude Bellingham was quick to point out the pedigree of his own team on the eve of the match, noting, "We're a pretty good team ourselves."

Bellingham was pivotal to Madrid's opener with a moment of brilliance to open City up.

Collecting a high ball just past the halfway line, the England midfielder shook off the attention of Rodri with a deft touch to wrong-foot his opponent.

The ball was worked to Vinícius Junior on the right, who crossed to Rodrygo. Rodrygo's first shot was pushed away by Éderson, but there was nothing City's goalkeeper could do when he fired home on the rebound.

In response, Erling Haaland and City mounted one attack after another to leave Madrid retreating for the majority of regulation time.

Jack Grealish had numerous chances to level the score, while Nacho had to clear from just in front of the line under pressure from Haaland. Phil Foden saw another effort stopped by Lunin.

City's pressure eventually paid off when De Bruyne leveled the game.

Substitute Jérémy Doku's cross was only partially blocked by Rüdiger and when the ball rolled to De Bruyne, he lifted a shot high into the net.

He almost put the home team ahead moments later with a long-range effort that just went over, and he missed the target again shortly after from inside the box.

Rüdiger came closest to scoring in the first half of extra time when he fired over from close range, but he made amends with the winning penalty.