Champions League

Can City Get Madrid Revenge With Haaland Help

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Following on from Wednesday evening’s Champions League quarter final 1-1 draw with Bayern Munich, Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City side progressed through to the semi final stage of the competition with an aggregate 4-1 win over their German Bundesliga opponents.

That, of course, set up a tantalising tie with Spanish giants Real Madrid. This is now the second year running that the two clubs have been drawn against each other at this stage of the European showpiece tournament, and City will be out for revenge after the heartache they suffered this time last year. For fans who like a flutter, there will be good odds on City getting their revenge from the likes of

Last time around Guardiola saw his side push them all the way and they actually went into the final minute of the Santiago Bernabeu second leg just simply needing to not concede two goals in order to progress through the final, but with Real Madrid’s first two proper efforts on goal in stoppage time, they scored both, taking the game into extra time, wherein, French international striker Karim Benzema netted from the penalty spot to seal their come back and take Carlo Ancelotti’s side to victory.

Given City’s overall performance and the harshness of how they lost, plenty in the wider world of football believe that this double header could well turn out very differently – not least given their capture last summer of Norwegian international hotshot Erling Haaland.

Having paid a reported £51.2 million to Borussia Dortmund for the 22 year old’s services, it was known that he would be a huge success in the English game (given the career he had at other clubs), and it did not take him long at all to start justifying, what in fairness in the modern game is a pretty low transfer fee, as he opened his club account with a brace in only his second game.

With the 2022/23 campaign now slowly heading towards its close, with a fair few games still left to play, Haaland is currently sitting on a phenomenal return of 48 goals so far, from his opening 39 starts.

12 of those goals have come in the competition itself, so the starlet will be determined to add to his own record when the semi final rocks around.

Having taken victory over Bayern Munich to set up the rematch with Real Madrid, former Barcelona gaffer (so there is additional history at play here) was pretty much matter of fact about it as he spoke to the press.

“I had a feeling we would see them. All clubs know if you want to win the Champions League you need to beat Real Madrid.”

He is not wrong, their record of 14 European Cups speaks for itself and is twice as many trophy lifts as anyone else – they have also won five of the last nine.

Bernardo Silva was excited about the match up.

“Hopefully yes! We will go for it definitely. We always go for it, but we feel the team is very, very confident at the minute. I think we are going through.”

Former City defender, Joleon Lescott, believes this game will definitely be different.

“Real Madrid are something special. Last year they weren’t great and in a 12-minute spell they took the tie away. I think Real Madrid have a belief in this competition they will produce. If they get seven chances, they will get five goals. But this is a different City. We haven’t seen a Manchester City able to rely on the defensive side of the game as this one does.”

We will have to see what the games bring, but I think we are guaranteed goals.

Photo by Unsplash

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