Champions League QFs | Man City beat Bayern 3-0; Inter beat Benfica

Manchester City’s Erling Braut Haaland celebrates scoring the team’s third goal against Bayern Munich with Julian Alvarez and Rodri in the UEFA Champions League quarterfinals at the Etihad Stadium on April 11, 2023 | Image Credit: Reuters

Rodri scored a stunning goal and Erling Haaland set another scoring record as Manchester City beat Bayern Munich 3-0 on Tuesday to continue their quest for a first ever Champions League title in their quarter -final first leg.

Haaland, who scored City’s third goal of the night in the 76th minute, has 45 goals in all competitions, a single-season record for a Premier League player, ahead of Mohamed Salah and Ruud van Nistelrooy.

Rodri put Pep Guardiola’s side ahead in the 27th minute, cutting the ball past midfielder Jamal Musiala and curling a long-range shot into the top left corner past the outstretched hands of Yann Sommer.

“I know this Bayern team is special,” said Guardiola, who managed Bayern from 2013-16. “We got a good result, but we need two strong games. Anything can happen at the Allianz Arena. I know that because I was at Bayern for three years.”

Rodri celebrated with a knee-length slide at the rain-soaked Etihad, as new Bayern manager Thomas Tuchel threw up his hands in disgust on the way to his side’s biggest Champions League defeat since 3- 0 defeats to Paris St Germain in 2017.

“It was very special for me to score my first goal in the Champions League. At that moment we were struggling because they were a good, good team,” said Rodri BT Sport.

“Sometimes we understand that we can’t have 80% possession. They play too. We scored three and could have scored four but it was a good result.”

What had been an evenly matched game turned completely in City’s favor midway through the second half, and Bernardo Silva scored their second in the 70th minute, heading in a cross from Haaland. The Norwegian got an own goal six minutes later, striking from close range.

“It doesn’t happen at Bayern Munich but credit to Manchester City, they are brilliant in both boxes,” said former Bayern player Owen Hargreaves in BT Sport. “Pep had a game plan and it worked well.”

Sommer had a busy night and was put under pressure early on, almost gifting Haaland a goal in the 14th minute. The ball goes too long, the striker bulldozes and gets his foot on the ball two yards from the net, but it flies wide.

City midfielder Ilkay Gundogan had a brilliant chance in the 34th minute, but Sommer, who was on the ground, cleared a leg to save what looked like a certain goal.

Ruben Dias’ second-half flick looked bound for the net, but Sommer tipped it onto the crossbar. However, he was powerless to stop Silva and then Haaland from completing the win.

Guardiola faces a familiar opponent in Tuchel, who was Chelsea manager when they beat City in the 2021 final.

The Spaniard has won four Premier League titles, one FA Cup and four League Cups with City but European success has eluded the manager who won the trophy twice while in charge of Barcelona.

His confidence will be high that he can end that drought before the second leg, which takes place on April 19 at Munich’s Allianz Arena.

“We don’t think it’s over yet. They’re a good team and we’re happy with the performance but we have to try to win the game,” Rodri added.

Inter beat Benfica 2-0

Inter Milan scored in the second half through Nicolo Barella and Romelu Lukaku for a 2-0 win at Benfica in their Champions League quarter-final, first leg on Tuesday that put them on course for a first-ever last-four that look since they won the trophy in 2010.

Romelu Lukaku of Inter Milan celebrates after scoring his team's second goal during the Champions League quarter final first leg soccer match between Benfica and Inter Milan at the Luz stadium in Lisbon, on April 11, 2023

Inter Milan’s Romelu Lukaku celebrates after scoring his team’s second goal during the Champions League quarter final first leg soccer match between Benfica and Inter Milan at the Luz stadium in Lisbon, on April 11, 2023 | Photo Credit: AP

Barella headed home firmly at the back post in the 51st minute, rising unchallenged to get on the end of a superb cross from center back Alessandro Bastoni, who charged down the left and delivered a pin-point ball.

Substitute Lukaku then converted an 82nd minute penalty after VAR referred Benfica skipper Joao Mario’s handball for review by English referee Michael Oliver, who awarded the spot kick after looking at the video monitor on the sidelines. of pitch.

The two goals give Inter a huge advantage for the return leg at the San Siro next Wednesday, where they will be desperate to progress to an all-Italian semi-final against either neighbors AC Milan or Napoli.

Alok Kumar

Alok Kumar is Content Writer for Sports section on Contact: [email protected]

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