First Leg of Champions League Semis Concludes

Andrew Tunley, Staff Writer

The first leg of the UEFA Champions League has concluded, with the final four teams battling it out for the last two spots. Manchester City faced off against Real Madrid at home and pulled off the win after a seven goal thriller. Belgian midfielder Kevin De Bruyne scored in a mere 90 seconds on a header. Just ten minutes later, Manchester City struck again after Gabriel Jesus scored from eight yards out. Madrid would not give up though, as Karim Benzema scored on a volley in the 33rd minute. After several missed chances by Real Madrid, the teams went into halftime separated by one goal.


Seven minutes after halftime, a turnover by Real Madrid caused a cross right to Phil Foden, who scored the header to extend Manchester City’s lead. The two goal lead gave some security, but just two minutes later, Vinicius Junior brought the lead back down two one. Bernardo Silva would answer and bring the lead back up to two, before Karim Benzema scored his second goal of the game to make it 4-3. The game would end before any more goals, as Manchester City heads to the second leg with a one goal advantage. The second leg will be played in Madrid on May 4th.


Liverpool and Villareal matched up the next day, with Liverpool winning 2-0 in dominating fashion. Villareal entered this game with a convervative mindset, trying to keep it close during the first leg to be energized at home during the second leg. The first half was successful for Villareal, as both teams headed into halftime tied 0-0. Liverpool would come out of halftime knowing that they needed to score. In just seven minutes, an unfortunate deflection off of a Villareal defender put the ball in the back of the net for Liverpool. Just two minutes later, Sadio Mane scored again for Liverpool to extend the lead. The score would stay that way for the remainder of the game. Villareal finished the first leg with just one shot and 27 percent of possession. 

Both first legs of the Champions League Semifinal ended close, making the anticipation for the second legs even more exciting. They will be played back-to-back on May 3rd and 4th. It’ll be exciting to see if Real Madrid can make a comeback to beat Manchester City and whether Liverpool’s convervative strategy will pay off in the end or send them into shambles.