Manchester City reaches its first ever Champions League Final after beating PSG in semis
Riyadh Mahrez scores a brace as Manchester City thrashes PSG to get into the Final of Champions League.
Ruben Dias and Riyadh Mahrez were in top form as Guardiola’s men crushes PSG’s dream of becoming European Champions.
Manchester City faced Paris Saint-Germain at home in the 2nd leg of semi-finals of the Champions League after beating them 2-1 in France. Before going into the 2nd leg, Manchester City already had an advantage of 2 away goals. The second leg was a spectacle to watch . The Manchester ground was full of hail and could potentially effect players performance but it looked beautiful. It didn’t look like that the game was taking place in the month of May.
Manchester played a 4-3-3 formation with De Bruyne as a striker. Mahrez and Foden played as Right and Left Wingers respectively. PSG started with a 4-2-3-1 formation with Icardi as a sole striker and Neymar on the Left. PSG left French talisman Kylian Mbappe on bench as he was not completely fit to be in the starting 11.
The match kicked off and PSG played a high line and started to make dangerous runs behind the City’s defence. Before the match, PSG coach Pochettino commented that they needed to be’ aggressive and clinical’ in the game only then they have a chance to win. The French Champions though followed only the first half of what the coach said. Guardiola played a masterclass. He knew what his opponents would be looking for. He planned accordingly and focused on playing counter attacking football.
In the 11th minute Ederson played an excellent long pass to Zinchenko, which almost covered 2/3rd of the pitch and caught PSG by surprise. The Ukrainian Left Back made a pin point pass to De Bruyne in the penalty box who hit the shot, but the ball got deflected of Florenzi and went straight to Mahrez. The Algerian hit a beautiful shot to the near post nutmegging Kimpembe and Navas into back of the net. PSG was further behind by 2 goals in aggregate as the scoresheet read Manchester City 1-0 PSG.
PSG came close in 16th minute when Di Maria crossed the ball to Marquinhos in the penalty box who headed the ball but was unlucky as the ball hit the crossbar. PSG had another chance just after 2 minutes when Ederson released the ball to Bernardo Silva who made a lose touch and Di Maria took the ball off him and kicked it with immense power and curl with just missing out, on the equalizer.
In The 62nd minute Zinchenko passed the ball to Foden on the left who started a counter attack, played give and go with De Bruyne and provided a grounded pass across the whole PSG defence to Mahrez in the 6-yard box, who tapped the ball into the net. City 2-0 PSG. It was over for the away side now . PSG needed to score 3 goals in a matter of 30 minutes which was almost impossible to do.
The whole French side was frustrated and angry as their dream of being the European Champions was destroyed once again. This aggression was clearly seen as PSG players started making unnecessary fouls on the pitch. It went too far when Angel Di Maria during a throw-in , on the side line kicked Fernandinho from behind . It was a straight red to the Argentinian. It was for the 2nd time in the semi-finals of the UCL that the French Champions were left with 10 men on the pitch before the final whistle blew.
Game finished 2-0 to Man City and once again Guardiola proved this season that he is the toughest one to beat when it comes to big games. Ruben Dias with 100 % tackles won, 90% pass accuracy, 3 clearances and 3 blocks was awarded the man of the match for his performance. Chelsea and Real Madrid face each other in the other semi-final today and the winner will meet City in the final.