Champions League quarterfinals return leg
What an eventful night this was at the Etihad Stadium in Manchester for the return leg of the Champions League quarterfinals. A seven-goal thriller that saw Tottenham prevailed at the last minute thanks to a VAR offside call for cancel the winning goal from Sterling.
The Spurs advance to the semifinals of the prime European tournament for the first in modern times and will face the surprise of the season, Ajax Amsterdam for a spot to Madrid at the Final.
Down 1-0 after the first leg, Man City overturned the tie in just 4 minutes when Sterling scored the opening goal. But, the resilience of this Spurs team, sans-Kane for the remainder of the season, was obvious. Korean superstar Son scored back-to-back goals to give Tottenham a two-goal cushion with only 11 minutes into the game. City would not back down as the club came back and score to goals over the next 10 minutes. 5 goals were scored in the first insane 21 minutes of the game.
Aguero would then give the necessary lead for City at the hour mark thanks to a beautiful pass from De Bruyne 4-2. But Llorente would put Tottenham back into it with just 20 minutes to play. Then came the VAR call. Sterling would score his hat-trick but ultimately would be denied for offside as the game came to an end!
Saturday both club are back at it again and the Premier League odds show that Manchester City must now win to save a promising season that could turn into a bad one should they lose their Premier League title to Liverpool..
City coach, Pep Guardiola, comments on the huge blow:
“It’s tough. It’s cruel but we have to accept it. It was a nice game for everyone. Second half we did everything. We scored the goals we needed but congratulations to Tottenham and all the best for the semi-finals.
I support VAR. But maybe from one angel the goal from Llorente is handball, maybe from the referee it is not. I am fine for fair football and fair decisions. The referee must be helped. In the future and the present, it will be fair and that’s all.
We have to react, close time, same team. But don’t think too much right now, sleep as much as possible and then we will prepare for the game.
We fought a lot, nine, ten months for the Premier League. It’s in our hands. It’s tough, of course, but we have to do it.”
Tottenham coach, Pochettino, hails an amazing night:
“It was such an emotional game, an emotional night. We love football, we feel the passion and this type of night is massive and the energy you spend is massive too. We are so tired but at the same time, we are so happy. It’s fantastic to be in the semi-finals and beating a team like Manchester City, one of the best teams in Europe. We are so proud, so happy.
I didn’t sleep too much, only a few hours, but that is normal. We need to keep going. The competition doesn’t wait for you. We need to start to think about Saturday, another important game.
For the players, it’s about recovery. We’ll assess them. Some players finished the game with some problems and now we need a starting 11, fresh and with plenty of energy (for Saturday). That’s why we need to assess them and give them time to recover. We travelled back last night, arrived late, spent time at the Lodge, slept and that is very good for us. Tomorrow we fly back to Manchester for Saturday. It’s difficult but when you are happy in your mind you find the energy.