For the first time in 7 seasons Barcelona has failed to reach the Semi-finals stage of the Champions League, and Manchester United was unable to hold on to their 1 goal lead for a spot in the semi-finals.
David Moye’s side held Bayern Munich to a 1-1 draw at Old Trafford in the first leg of their Champions League game last week, and they surprised Bayern with a stunning shot from Patrice Eva in the 57th minute of the second half, but the celebration did not last as Bayern came back with vengeance.
Two minutes after being down a goal, Pep Guardiola’s side levelled up with a downward header by Marior Manduzic in the 59th minute, making the game 2-2 on aggregate. Nine minutes later, Thomas Muller put Bayern up with a tap in in the 68th, as Patrice Evra failed to close down on the German midfielder. Manchester United plight was not yet over, as Arjen Robben continuously attacked down the right wing as he was too fast for Evra to contain, and eventually the Dutch Footballer found the back of the net in the 76th minute.
David Moye’s side started the game well, attacking and defending well for the most part of the game, but they lost control of the game right after going one goal up. They seem to wake up a sleeping Giant as Bayern responded to going a goal behind with sheer conviction. With this win Bayern progresses to the Semi-final with Madrid, Chelsea, Atletico Madrid, and this is the last time four Man-U legends (Vidic, Evra, Giggs, and Ferdinand) will be playing for Man-U in the UEFA Champions League.
In Madrid, Atletico joined the other Madrid Team (Real Madrid) in the Semi-final. Atletico Madrid played a very physical game against Barcelona and sealed their victory with an early goal in the 5th minute of the game. After drawing 1-1 last week in Barcelona, Atletico Madrid knew they were very much in control of their destiny due to their away goal advantage. All Atletico had to do was either play a goalless game, or beat Barcelona, and Koke’s early goal secured Atletico Madrid a first Champions League semi-final spot in 40 years.
After going up in the 5th minute, Atletico Madrid played defensively for most of the game, but to their credit, they still pushed forward when they had the opportunity go up by more goals hitting the bar three times today, through David Villa in the 20th minute, and again in the 21st minute.
Barcelona had their chances in the game, but they did not do enough to deserve a win. Barcelona’s first close chance came through a Lionel Messi header in the 20th minute, but the Argentine headed wide. Barcelona almost levelled again in the 21st minute as Neymar worked hard to get the ball to Mesi, who again missed from 12 yards out. In the end, Barcelona seemed like a team that has lost its spark and was very incoherent as game came towards the end. They were outplayed, out-hustled, outclassed, and knocked out of the Champions League by an energetic Atletico Madrid side.
The next round of the Champions League will be determined during the draw on Friday, April 11th at 6:00am EST at the UEFA headquarters in Nyon, Switzerland.