Manchester City are eyeing their second straight UEFA Champions League final, but Real Madrid know this stage of the competition better than anyone.
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For the second time in this season's UEFA Champions League Real Madrid must overturn a first-leg defeat at home as Manchester City – bidding to reach their second successive final – travel to Spain holding a 4-3 advantage after a pulsating contest in north-west England.As it happened: Man. City 4-3 Real Madrid
• Kevin De Bruyne headed City in front only 94 seconds into the first leg on 26 April – the fastest goal in a UEFA Champions League semi-final – and Madrid quickly conceded again, to Gabriel Jesus in the 11th minute – the earliest they had let in two goals in a European match.
Karim Benzema halved the deficit in the 33rd minute, however, and, though Phil Foden headed City's third eight minutes after half-time, Vinícius Júnior promptly skipped through to keep Madrid in touch. Bernardo Silva's 74th-minute strike gave City a two-goal cushion for the third time, but Madrid would not be shaken off and Benzema pulled another back from the spot eight minutes from time after Aymeric Laporte had handled.
• That equalled the most goals in a UEFA Champions League semi-final game, matching the seven of Ajax's 5-2 home win against Bayern München in the 1994/95 second leg and Liverpool's defeat of Roma by the same scoreline in the 2017/18 first leg.
• This is only City's third UEFA Champions League semi-final, all in the last seven seasons, with the first having ended in defeat by Madrid, although the English club gained a measure of revenge with a last-16 elimination of the Spanish side in 2019/20.
• Madrid, who were crowned Spanish champions on Saturday, have won 16 European Cup semi-finals overall including four of the previous nine they have been involved in since 2010/11.
• This is a second successive Anglo-Spanish contest for both teams. City edged out Madrid's neighbours Atlético in the quarter-finals while Benzema scored four of his team's five goals as Madrid ousted holders Chelsea, who beat City in last season's final.
• City were 2-1 winners in both legs against Madrid in the 2019/20 UEFA Champions League round of 16 despite falling behind in the first leg at the Santiago Bernabéu on 26 February when Isco gave the home side a 60th-minute lead. Late goals from Jesus (78) and De Bruyne (83), the latter a penalty after Raheem Sterling had been fouled by Dani Carvajal, turned the game around, Madrid ending with ten men as captain Sergio Ramos was dismissed four minutes from time after fouling Jesus.
• That was City's first victory against Madrid but they clinched their aggregate win with a second in the delayed second leg in Manchester on 7 August. Although Sterling's ninth-minute goal was levelled 19 minutes later by Benzema, Jesus secured another 2-1 victory in the 68th minute.
• There was only one goal in the 2015/16 UEFA Champions League semi-final between the clubs. After the first game in Manchester ended scoreless, a 20th-minute own goal from Fernando at the Santiago Bernabéu proved enough to take Zinédine Zidane's Madrid into the final, where they beat Atlético on penalties, at the expense of Manuel Pellegrini's City.
• The sides' only other competitive fixtures came in the 2012/13 group stage, when Madrid twice came from behind to win 3-2 in Spain on Matchday 1. City led twice through Edin Džeko (68) and Aleksandar Kolarov (85) but Madrid responded through Marcelo (76) and Benzema (87) before Cristiano Ronaldo snatched a 90th-minute victory.
• It was 1-1 in Manchester, Sergio Agüero's penalty cancelling out Benzema's tenth-minute strike. Madrid ended with ten men as Álvaro Arbeloa collected a second yellow card in fouling Agüero to concede that spot kick.
• Those four points helped José Mourinho's Madrid finish second in Group D, behind Borussia Dortmund; City, then managed by Roberto Mancini, ended bottom with three points having not won a game.
• This is Madrid's 31st European Cup semi-final overall, with the record W16 L14:
1955/56 AC Milan W 5-4 (4-2 h, 1-2 a)
1956/57 Manchester United W 5-3 (3-1 h, 2-2 a)
1957/58 Vasas W 4-2 (4-0 h, 0-2 a)
1958/59 Atlético de Madrid W 2-1 replay (2-1 h, 0-1 a)
1959/60 Barcelona W 6-2 (3-1 h, 3-1 a)
1961/62 Standard Liège W 6-0 (4-0 h, 2-0 a)
1963/64 Zürich W 8-1 (2-1 a, 6-0 h)
1965/66 Inter W 2-1 (1-0 h, 1-1 a)
1967/68 Manchester United L 3-4 (0-1 a, 3-3 h)
1972 73 Ajax L 1-3 (1-2 a, 0-1 h)
1975/76 Bayern München L 1-3 (1-1 h, 0-2 a)
1979/80 Hamburg L 3-5 (2-0 h, 1-5 a)
1980/81 Inter W 2-1 (2-0 h, 0-1 a)
1986/87 Bayern München L 2-4 (1-4 a, 1-0 h)
1987/88 PSV Eindhoven L 1-1 away goals (1-1 h, 0-0 a)
1988/89 AC Milan L 1-6 (1-1 h, 0-5 a)
1997/98 Borussia Dortmund W 2-0 (2-0 h, 0-0 a)
1999/00 Bayern München W 3-2 (2-0 h, 1-2 a)
2000/01 Bayern München L 1-3 (0-1 h, 1-2 a)
2001/02 Barcelona W 3-1 (2-0 a, 1-1 h)
2002/03 Juventus L 3-4 (2-1 h, 1-3 a)
2010/11 Barcelona L 1-3 (0-2 h, 1-1 a)
2011/12 Bayern München, L 1-3 on penalties (1-2 a, 2-1 h)
2012/13 Borussia Dortmund L 3-4 (1-4 a, 2-0 h)
2013/14 Bayern München W 5-0 (1-0 h, 4-0 a)
2014/15 Juventus L 2-3 (1-2 a, 1-1 h)
2015/16 Manchester City W 1-0 (0-0 a, 1-0 h)
2016/17 Atlético de Madrid W 4-2 (3-0 h, 1-2 a)
2017/18 Bayern München W 4-3 (2-1 a, 2-2 h)
2020/21 Chelsea L 1-3 (1-1 h, 0-2 a)
• Madrid have never come from behind to win a European Cup semi-final after losing the first leg, home or away. They have been eliminated on all eight previous occasions.
• Madrid had won three successive semi-final ties, having been beaten in five of the previous six, before losing to Chelsea last season.
• This is Madrid's 15th appearance in the UEFA Champions League semi-finals, a competition record, three more than Barcelona and Bayern.
• Madrid won five of their six Group D games this season, the exception a stunning 2-1 defeat at home to debutants Sheriff on Matchday 2, as they finished first in their section for the third time in four seasons. They also beat Shakhtar Donetsk 2-1 and Inter 2-0 in Madrid.
• The Merengues lost 1-0 at Paris in the round of 16 first leg, however, and looked to be heading out when they fell further behind in the Santiago Bernabéu, but Benzema struck three times in the final half-hour to earn a 3-1 second-leg win and 3-2 aggregate triumph.
• The Frenchman followed that with another hat-trick in the quarter-final first leg at Chelsea, a 3-1 Madrid victory, and headed the decisive goal of the return in extra time, Madrid fighting back from 3-0 down on the night to go through 5-4 on aggregate.
• Benzema's goals at Chelsea made him only the fourth player to score a hat-trick in successive UEFA Champions Lague matches and only the seventh to have hit three goals in more than one game in the same campaign.
• Benzema has now scored 14 goals in this season's UEFA Champions League, his first-leg double taking him one above Robert Lewandowski, whose Bayern side were eliminated in the quarter-finals.
• Cristiano Ronaldo holds the record for most goals scored in a single UEFA Champions League knockout phase with ten in Madrid's victorious 2016/17 campaign; Benzema has nine in 2021/22.
• The Spanish side have won only eight of their last 17 home European games (D3 L6) although they have been victorious in seven of the most recent ten (D1 L2).
• Under Zidane, Madrid also finished first in their section in 2020/21, picking up six of their ten points against Inter and sealing progress as group winners with a 2-0 home defeat of Borussia Mönchengladbach on Matchday 6.
• Madrid then won both legs against Atalanta in the round of 16 (1-0 a, 3-1 h) before eliminating Liverpool in the quarter-finals (3-1 h, 0-0 a) prior to losing to Chelsea.
• Zidane was replaced by Carlo Ancelotti in the summer, the Italian having guided Madrid to their tenth European Cup in 2013/14.
• The Spanish side were second in the 2020/21 Liga, finishing two points behind neighbours Atlético.
• Madrid have reached the semi-finals or better in ten of the last 12 UEFA Champions League campaigns, the exceptions their successive round of 16 eliminations by Ajax in 2018/19 and City in 2019/20.
• Madrid's record in two-legged knockout ties against English clubs is now W10 L6. This season's quarter-final against Chelsea was their fifth aggregate victory in the last seven, although their last two UEFA Champions League campaigns have been ended by Premier League opponents – Chelsea last season and City in the 2019/20 round of 16.
• Last season's defeat by Chelsea made it two wins and two losses from four ties against English opponents in European Cup semi-finals.
• The second-leg loss to Chelsea in this season's quarter-finals was only Madrid's fourth at home to English clubs; their record otherwise is W9 D7, although they have won only one of their last five games against English visitors in Madrid (D2 L2).
• Madrid have overturned a first-leg away defeat 24 times, failing on a further 16 occasions, although they have won the last two, beating Paris this season having defeated Wolfsburg in the 2015/16 UEFA Champions League quarter-finals (0-2 a, 3-0 h) to end a run of five successive defeats. This is the first tie in which they have lost the away first leg 3-4.
• Madrid's record in four UEFA penalty shoot-outs is W2 L2:
5-6 v Crvena zvezda, 1974/75 European Cup Winners' Cup quarter-final
3-1 v Juventus, 1986/87 European Champion Clubs' Cup second round
1-3 v Bayern München, 2011/12 UEFA Champions League semi-final
5-3 v Atlético de Madrid, 2015/16 UEFA Champions League final
• City's record in European Cup semi-finals is W1 L1:
2015/16 Real Madrid L 0-1 (0-0 h, 0-1 a)
2020/21 Paris Saint-Germain W 4-1 (2-1 a, 2-0 h)
• The Manchester club have played in two other UEFA competition semi-finals, both in the European Cup Winners' Cup. They beat Schalke in 1969/70 (0-1 a, 5-1 h) but lost to Chelsea at the same stage the following season (0-1 a, 0-1 h).
• City have therefore won only one of their four away legs in UEFA semi-finals, the most recent, having lost the other three 1-0.
• City collected 12 points in this season's group stage to finish a point clear of Paris, winning all three home games but losing two of the three away, at Paris (0-2) and Leipzig (1-2) either side of a 5-1 victory at Club Brugge. They then eased past Sporting CP in the round of 16 thanks to a 5-0 win in Portugal and a goalless draw in Manchester.
• In the quarter-final against Atlético, De Bruyne scored the only goal of the tie with 20 minutes remaining of the first leg in Manchester, City holding out for a goalless draw in Madrid to progress.
• In 2020/21 City ended a run of three successive quarter-final eliminations by going all the way to the UEFA Champions League final only to lose 1-0 to Chelsea at Porto's Estádio do Dragão on 29 May.
• City beat Borussia Mönchengladbach (2-0 a, 2-0 h), Borussia Dortmund (2-1 h, 2-1 a) and Paris (2-1 a, 2-0 h) en route to the final. They had finished first in Group C with 16 points, keeping five clean sheets and conceding only one goal – equalling the UEFA Champions League group stage record.
• City conceded ten goals in the 2021/22 UEFA Champions League group stage, five more than in their 13 games in last season's competition, without managing a clean sheet although they had kept four in succession in the knockout phase prior to shipping three at home to Madrid.
• Champions of England for the seventh time in 2020/21, their third title in four seasons, City also claimed the English League Cup for the fourth season in a row and the eighth overall.
• This is the Cityzens' 11th UEFA Champions League campaign; they have been involved in the group stage every season since 2011/12 and have now reached the knockout rounds in nine successive campaigns.
• Pep Guardiola's team have won 14 of their last 22 away European matches (D4 L4). The last two defeats before the loss in Paris on Matchday 2 had both come in England; the previous away game they had lost abroad was at Shakhtar Donetsk (1-2) on Matchday 6 of the 2017/18 UEFA Champions League.
• This season's victory at Sporting made it five successive away wins in the UEFA Champions League knockout phase and seven in a row outside England before the draw at Atlético. Overall, however, City have won only eight of their 16 away knockout phase matches in the competition (D2 L6).
• City had won four successive games against Spanish clubs before being held at Atlético.
• That made City's record against Spanish clubs in two-legged knockout ties W3 L4, their 2019/20 success against Real Madrid having ended a run of four successive defeats. That win against Madrid was also their first aggregate victory against Liga opponents in the UEFA Champions League, having twice lost to Barcelona in the round of 16, in both 2013/14 (1-4 aggregate) and 2014/15 (1-3 agg), and Madrid in the 2015/16 semi-finals.
• The 2-1 win at Real Madrid in the 2019/20 UEFA Champions League round of 16 first leg was one of only three City victories in their 12 visits to Spain (D2 L7). It is also their only knockout win in their seven games away to a Spanish club (D2 L4).
• This season's quarter-final was the seventh of the nine UEFA competition ties in which City won the home first leg and also triumphed on aggregate. Their only two defeats came against Juventus in the 1976/77 UEFA Cup first round (1-0 h, 0-2 a) and on away goals against Monaco in the 2016/17 UEFA Champions League round of 16 (5-3 h, 1-3 a), the second leg at the Stade Louis II their last away defeat outside England in the competition's knockout phase. This is the first time they have won the first leg 4-3.
• City's record in two UEFA penalty shoot-outs is W2 L0:
4-2 v Midtjylland, 2008/09 UEFA Cup second qualifying round
4-3 v Aalborg, 2008/09 UEFA Cup round of 16
Links and trivia
• Between 2008 and 2012, Guardiola amassed 14 trophies as Barcelona coach, including the UEFA Champions League in 2009 and 2011 – beating Madrid in the semi-finals in the latter campaign – and three successive Liga titles (2009–11). Guardiola met Madrid 15 times as Barcelona coach (W9 D4 L2) and outscored the Merengues 33-15. In his playing days, Guardiola's Liga record against Madrid was W6 D5 L3.
• Guardiola's Bayern München side lost 5-0 on aggregate to Madrid (0-1 a, 0-4 h) in the 2013/14 UEFA Champions League semi-finals.
• Ancelotti was Chelsea manager between 2009 and 2011, winning the 2009/10 Premier League and FA Cup double. The Italian was also in charge of Everton between 2019 and 2021. He has only beaten City once in eight meetings – a 2-0 victory as Chelsea coach in March 2011 – losing the other seven.
• Have played in England:
Luka Modrić (Tottenham 2008–12)
Gareth Bale (Southampton 2005–07, Tottenham 2007–13, 2020/21 loan)
Thibaut Courtois (Chelsea 2014–18)
Eden Hazard (Chelsea 2012–19)
Dani Ceballos (Arsenal 2019–21 loan)
• Have played in Spain:
Aymeric Laporte (Athletic Club 2012–18)
Rodri (Villarreal 2016–18, Atlético Madrid 2018/19)
• International team-mates:
Éder Militão, Rodrygo, Vinícius Júnior, Casemiro & Ederson, Gabriel Jesus (Brazil)
Eden Hazard, Thibaut Courtois & Kevin De Bruyne (Belgium)
Nacho, Dani Carvajal, Isco, Marco Asensio, Lucas Vázquez, Dani Ceballos & Aymeric Laporte, Rodri (Spain)
• Laporte played every minute as Spain reached the semi-finals of UEFA EURO 2020, knocking out Modrić's Croatia in the round of 16.
• A Benzema goal helped France beat a Spain side containing Rodri and Laporte 2-1 in the final of the UEFA Nations League on 10 October 2021.
• Sterling scored twice as England won 3-2 against a Spain side containing Nacho and Marco Asensio – with Rodri an unused substitute – in the UEFA Nations League in October 2018.
• Nacho's next appearance will be his 50th in both the UEFA Champions League, group stage to final, and UEFA club competition.
• Marco Asensio has played 49 games in UEFA club competition.
• On Saturday Madrid sealed their 35th Liga title, and a second in three years, with four games to spare – the earliest they have clinched a championship since 1988/89, when they also managed it with four games to spare – thanks to a 4-0 win at home to Espanyol.
• That made Carlo Ancelotti the oldest coach to win the Liga title, aged 62 years 325 days, and also made him the only manager in history to win league titles in Spain, Italy, Germany, England and France.
• Rodrygo scored twice in the first half to make it four goals in his last five matches in all competitions – as many as in his previous 79 appearances – before Asensio struck his tenth Liga goal of the season, reaching double figures for the first time, and substitute Karim Benzema his 26th.
• Madrid have scored three or more goals in all of their last four matches, winning 3-2 at Sevilla on 17 April having been 2-0 down and 3-1 at Osasuna three days later before the first-leg defeat at City and Saturday's victory.
• Ancelotti's side have scored three or more goals in eight of their last 12 games.
• Madrid have won 11 of their last 14 games in all competitions.
• Madrid have also scored two or more goals in 11 of their last 12 matches in all competitions, the exception a 4-0 Liga loss at home to Barcelona on 20 March.
• That was Madrid's heaviest Clásico defeat since a 5-1 loss at the Camp Nou in 2018 and their heaviest home defeat in the fixture since another 4-0 loss in November 2015.
• Madrid have lost two of their last four home games, winning the other two; before losing to Barcelona, they were unbeaten in 14 matches at the Santiago Bernabéu (W11 D3), since going down to Sheriff on Matchday 2.
• The defeat against Barcelona was Madrid's first in the Liga since a 1-0 loss at Getafe on 2 January, and just their third of the season. It is also their only reverse in their last 14 league matches (W11 D2); they have won all five games since.
• The Merengues have lost just two of their last 26 Liga fixtures (W20 D4).
• Benzema has 18 goals in his last 13 Madrid appearances.
• The Frenchman took six penalties in April in all competitions, missing three – all in the Liga, including two in the same game against Osasuna – making him the first player to miss two spot kicks in a Liga game since April 2006. In total Benzema has missed four of 12 penalties he has taken in 2021/22, all in the Liga – the most any player has missed in a season since 2005/06.
• Benzema has 42 goals in 42 matches in all competitions this season.
• Benzema's tally of 26 Liga goals so far this season is his most prolific campaign for Madrid, surpassing his 2015/16 total of 24. He has passed the 20-goal mark in the Spanish top flight for the fourth season running, the seventh player to achieve that feat.
• Madrid were knocked out of the Copa del Rey by a 1-0 quarter-final loss at Athletic Club on 3 February.
• The Merengues did, however, claim the Spanish Super Cup in January, beating Barcelona 3-2 after extra time in the semi-finals before securing a 2-0 victory against Athletic with goals from Luka Modrić and Benzema.
• David Alaba, who opened the scoring against Osasuna, was substituted at half-time with a thigh issue. He returned to start at City, but was again replaced at the interval and sat out the weekend win.
• Casemiro started on Saturday, his first game since the second leg against Chelsea due to a thigh injury, although he was an unused substitute in the first leg at City, when Ferland Mendy (thigh) returned from an injury that had kept him out since the quarter-final second leg.
• Eden Hazard has not played since coming on as a late substitute in a 3-0 home victory against Alavés on 19 February. The Belgian underwent surgery to remove a metal plate in his right fibula on 29 March.
• Luka Jović has not featured for Madrid since 12 February due to an ankle problem, while Isco made his first appearance since 6 February as a substitute against Osasuna after recovering from a back injury.
• Gareth Bale missed Saturday's win with a back problem.
• Scott Carson's substitute appearance in the round of 16 second leg against Sporting was just his second in the UEFA Champions League and came almost 17 years after his first, for Liverpool against Juventus in the quarter-final first leg on 5 April 2005.
• City stayed a point clear of Liverpool at the top of the Premier League with a 4-0 win at Leeds on Saturday, Nathan Aké and Fernandinho both scoring their second league goals of the season.
• That was City's fifth successive away clean sheet in the Premier League, the longest run of away league shut-outs in their history.
• City have won their last four games in all competitions, scoring 16 goals and conceding four.
• The Manchester club are unbeaten in their last 14 away games in all competitions (W11 D3), since a 2-1 loss at Leipzig on Matchday 6.
• A 3-0 home victory against Brighton in the Premier League on 20 April was Pep Guardiola's 250th victory in all competitions as City manager, in his 344th match in charge. He is the quickest manager to reach that mark with an English top-flight club, surpassing José Mourinho's previous record of 396 games.
• On 23 April City scored five or more goals in a game this season for the ninth time in what was their 51st fixture in all competitions, beating Watford 5-1 in Manchester. Gabriel Jesus got four of the goals, as many as he had scored in his previous 30 league appearances combined. It was also the Brazilian's first Premier League hat-trick; he had scored twice in eight previous matches.
• Jesus has scored in City's last three matches in all competitions having also found the net against Madrid and Leeds.
• Rodri scored City's other goal against Watford and now has five in the Premier League in 2021/22 making this his most prolific league campaign.
• City have won 25 of the 26 Premier League matches this season in which they opened the scoring, the exception a 2-2 home draw against Liverpool on 10 April.
• The 0-0 draw at Atlético in the quarter-final second leg was the ninth game in all competitions this season in which City had failed to find the net, three more than in the whole of 2020/21.
• City's ten-game unbeaten run in all competitions (W6 D4) was ended by a 3-2 loss to Liverpool in the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley on 16 April.
• That was City's first defeat since a 3-2 home loss against Tottenham on 19 February; they have now lost two of their last 29 games in all competitions (W22 D5).
• City have suffered three Premier League losses this season (W26 D5), the defeat by Spurs the only reverse in their last 24 league games (W20 D3).
• Guardiola's side have scored 78 goals in their last 29 games in all competitions, conceding 21.
• The Cityzens have kept 12 clean sheets in their last 19 games in all competitions.
• City won 36 league games in 2021, an English top-flight record; the previous best of 33 was set by Liverpool in 1982. Nineteen of those victories came away from home, another top-flight best.
• John Stones was substituted against Brighton with a hamstring injury; he returned to start in the first leg against Real Madrid but was withdrawn after 36 minutes after a recurrence of the problem and sat out the weekend win.
• Rúben Dias returned as a half-time substitute against Brighton having been out since 1 March with a hamstring injury and played 90 minutes against Watford, Madrid and Leeds.
• Kyle Walker has been out since the quarter-final second leg at Atlético on 13 April with an ankle problem.
• Cole Palmer has not played since scoring in City's FA Cup win at Swindon on 7 January due to an ankle injury although he has been an unused substitute in three of City's last four games.
• City signed Julián Álvarez from River Plate in January, although the 22-year-old forward has been loaned back to the Argentinian club for the rest of the season.