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Manchester City in first UCL semi-final under Guardiola

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Phil Foden took the winner again as Manchester City beat Borussia Dortmund 2-1 on Wednesday to reach the semi-finals of the 2020/2021 UEFA Champions League.

It was a feat first achieved under manager Pep Guardiola.

Foden was on target in the 75th minute after Riyad Mahrez’s penalty canceled Borussia Dortmund’s lead in the first half by Jude Bellingham.

Manchester City advanced 4-2 on aggregate, having also dominated the first quarter-final 2-1 last week following Foden’s late strike.

They now face last year’s finalists Paris Saint-Germain (PSG) in the last four they had only reached once in 2016.

They came out in the 16 and three quarter-finals under the reign of Guardiola who won the trophy with FC Barcelona in 2009 and 2011.

The PSG of Neymar and Kylian Mbappe, who ousted the holders of Bayern Munich the day before, and Manchester City really want to win the elite event for the first time.

Now, one of them is guaranteed a place in the final on May 29 in Istanbul.

“This club and this team deserve it. We are grateful to have participated in a great competition and to have reached the semi-finals for the first time with this team.

“Obviously we are very happy about that,” said Manchester City German midfielder Ilkay Guendogan.

13-time record winners Real Madrid are also in the semi-finals as a 0-0 draw at Anfield on the day completed a 3-1 aggregate victory over 2019 champions Liverpool.

Their opponents in the last four scheduled for April 27/28 and May 5/6 are Chelsea, who eliminated FC Porto on Tuesday.

England teenager Bellingham scored his first Bundesliga goal this weekend and followed it up against Manchester City when he shot in the upper right corner for a dream start to Borussia Dortmund.

Manchester City picked up the pace and went in search of a goal needed to avoid elimination, with Kevin de Bruyne being denied by the crossbar and Mahrez’s shot blocked by Bellingham.

They were tied in the 54th minute from Mahrez’s penalty in the right corner.

It was awarded and then confirmed by the video assistant referee after German defender Emre Can directed a cross on his own outstretched arm.

Borussia Dortmund’s fate was sealed in the 75th minute when Foden surprised goalkeeper Marwin Hitz with a shot in the near right corner on a corner kick.

“After conceding the first goal, we were able to take possession of the ball and create chances.

“Our goal was to score the first goal of the second half and put the game back in our hands. This is exactly what we did, ”Guendogan said.

At Anfield, Liverpool had to apologize for a Real Madrid squad bus window crushed by fans upon arrival before strongly starting their comeback attempt.

Mohamed Salah took aim directly at goaltender Thibault Courtois from 10 yards into the game, and the Belgian made another important save against James Milner’s curling effort.

Real Madrid almost came to a tie when Karim Benzema’s effort was deflected against the goal post.

Georginio Wijnaldum was aiming high for the Reds who ultimately failed to create a comeback similar to that of two years ago when they ousted FC Barcelona 4-0 after losing 3-0 in Spain.

Like Borussia Dortmund, they now risk missing out on UEFA Champions League football next season due to their league rankings.

“The performance, the intensity and the desire were good, but we couldn’t take the chances we had and that was the difference,” said Milner.

(NAN)

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