Real Madrid and Man City set for epic Champions League showdown
‘Los Blancos’ have their sights set on European Cup number 15 with City looking for their debut Champions League final win.
Following their 2021-22 season epic Champions League semi-final showdown that saw Madrid progress after extra time with a 6-5 aggregate win, the seasoned veterans of the competition from the Bernabeu and relative New Kids on the Champions League block Man City face off again with a place in the final on the line.
This season’s UCL semi-final will be the third time then English and Spanish sides have met at this stage of the competition with Madrid victorious on both counts. Back in 2106, on their way to claiming the trophy, Madrid beat an uber defensive Manuel Pellegrini managed City 1-0 on aggregate and edged through following last seasons rollercoaster 6-5 aggregate win.
The 2022-23 meeting next week at the Bernabeu will represent the ninth time that both sides have met in the Champions League with both teams having recorded three wins a-piece with two games tied.
Their meeting in the pandemic hampered 2019-20 season in the Round of 16 saw the Mancunian side win both games by a 2-1 scoreline. The return leg was played at am empty City of Manchester Stadium and Madrid were in trouble early on when French defender Varane under-hit a back pass to gift Sterling the chance to put the Sky blues in command.
That season, Guardiola’s City went on to the final but fell short (1-0) in an all Premier League clash against Chelsea played in front of a reduced crowd due to Covid-19 restrictions in Porto at the Do Dragao stadium.
Prior to the 2015-16 meeting, the sides’ only other competitive fixtures came in the 2012/13 group stage, when Real Madrid ran out 3-2 winners in the Matchday 1 clash at the Bernabeu.
The Manchester leg of the group stage game ended 1-1 with Benzema opening the scoring for ‘Los Blancos’ before Kun Aguero pulled City level from the spot.
The winners of the semi-final will face Italian giants Inter or AC Milan as the Serie A powerhorses face off in a two legged Derby della Madonnina with the final set to be staged in Istanbul’s Ataturk Olympic Stadium on 10 June.
Real Madrid are on the hunt for their 15th European Cup/Champions League final win with City out to secure their first ever UCL trophy.