Friday, May 24, 2024

I saw only one team – Rodri bemoans Real Madrid’s tactics after City’s Euro exit

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 18 Apr 2024

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Rodri claims he “saw only one team” trying to win as he bemoaned Real Madrid’s tactics following Manchester City’s heartbreaking Champions League quarter-final loss.

City’s European title defence ended in agonising fashion at the Etihad Stadium on Wednesday as the Spanish giants prevailed 4-3 on penalties after a 1-1 draw on the night meant the tie ended 4-4 on aggregate.

It was a clash the holders completely dominated, racking up 33 attempts on goal to the visitors’ eight, but Real defended deep to frustrate them and ultimately ended their hopes of a second successive treble.

City midfielder Rodri said: “To be honest, I saw only one team. In terms of defending, they defended (well). They knew how to suffer and we know how tough Real Madrid are.

“But in my opinion we should go through with that amount of chances but this is the trick of this competition. They know how to play it. We congratulate them.

“We gave everything, there is nothing to regret. This is football sometimes. This shows how difficult it is to win it, as we did last season. It was very frustrating and sometimes it is difficult to explain.”

City’s exit from the competition they won with a Rodri goal in Istanbul last year, coupled with Arsenal’s loss to Bayern Munich, means there are no English semi-finalists for the first time since 2020.

City had to chase the tie after Rodrgyo pounced to put Real ahead after 12 minutes.

They created a plethora of chances in a storming response, with Erling Haaland going the closest in the first half when he headed against the bar.

Further opportunities came and went after the break and it was not until the 76th minute that Kevin De Bruyne finally broke through to net a deserved equaliser.

But De Bruyne spurned a good chance to win it when he fired over soon after and, with extra-time failing to separate the sides, it came down to spot-kicks.

Ederson saved from Luka Modric but Bernardo Silva’s attempted Panenka was too easy for Andriy Lunin, who also denied Mateo Kovavic as Real went through.

The Premier League leaders now have little time to pick themselves up before heading to Wembley for an FA Cup semi-final with Chelsea on Saturday.

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