Manchester City 4-0 Real Madrid: Masterful performance sends Citizens to final

Manchester City have reached their second Champions League final in three years after dismantling Real Madrid 4-0 (5-1 on aggregate) at the Etihad Stadium.

A totally one-sided first half, inspired by Bernardo Silva, saw Man City take a big step towards Istanbul.

Real Madrid could hardly get a touch of the ball as City camped themselves outside the opposition box. Erling Haaland had some early chances to get on the scoresheet; however, Los Blancos can thank Thibaut Courtois for denying the Norwegian twice.

The hosts finally broke the deadlock midway through the half. Kevin de Bruyne found Bernardo Silva wide open in the Real box. Silva then sent Courtois the wrong way and slammed a shot past the Belgian at the near post. City were ahead, and deservedly so.

Carlo Ancelotti’s side mustered just a solitary shot on goal throughout a disappointing half. Their single effort was dangerous, though, as Toni Kroos rattled the bar. Instead of equalizing, Madrid found themselves even further behind shortly after.

City worked another opening that allowed Ilkay Gundogan to get a shot off. His effort was blocked, although the ricochet allowed Bernardo to nod home his second of the game.

Pep Guardiola’s men had been imperious during the first 45 minutes. In contrast, Real truly had their work cut out.

Second half

Real Madrid had to respond after the break and thus got an early foothold in the game. A few brighter spells of possession saw David Alaba test Ederson with a free kick – but the Brazilian was equal to the shot.

City played within themselves knowing that they needed to just see out the tie. Despite this, opportunities still presented themselves to the Citizens. Erling Haaland had a golden chance to seal City’s place in Istanbul, although Courtois denied him once more.

The Premier League leaders stole a 3-0 advantage around 75 minutes. A De Bruyne free kick found Manuel Akanji, whose header hit Eder Militao on its way into the net.

This effectively killed off any slim hopes Real had of advancing. Meanwhile, City were in dreamland as they booked their spots in their second-ever UCL final. Julian Alvarez’s injury-time strike was simply the icing on the cake.

Manchester City now have both the FA Cup and Champions League final to look forward to next month. The Citizens take on local rivals Manchester United in the domestic showpiece on 3 June. One week later, a battle with Serie A giants Inter Milan awaits in Turkey.

The treble is well and truly on.

Featured image credit: Getty