Tuesday’s Champions League action ended on a high note. We witnessed a class in the Bernabéu as Real Madrid knocked out last year’s winners Chelsea in a five-goal classic. The shock of the day goes to Villarreal as they beat the odds again by knocking out Bayern Munich.
Fans can only hope that Wednesday provides half the flare that Tuesday gave.
Villarreal has done it again
The Spanish side has done it again in the Champions League, beating the odds. After defeating Juventus in the last round, they continued their impressive run taking out Bayern Munich. Shockwaves spread across Europe once again is a fantastic underdog story for Unai Emery and his side. Few predicted this, but football is a funny game.
Bayern came with full force from the start but had no success in scoring. It became frustrating for the Bundesliga giants as they created many chances but couldn’t find the net. But in the 52nd minute, Bayern broke through and got their goal scored by Robert Lewandowski. With Bayern pressing hard to avoid extra time, in the last minute of the game, Villarreal hit on a counter. Moreno’s pass found Samuel Chukwueze to give Villarreal the equaliser, but more importantly the lead in aggregate.
The match ended 1-1 with the Spanish side advancing 2-1 in aggregate. Massive credit to mastermind Unai Emery, who many believe couldn’t take his team this far in the Champions League. Despite the dismal seventh position in La Liga, what Villarreal is doing in the Champions League this season is incredible, and as a football fan, you must admire them for it. It is reminiscent of his remarkable Europa League record after a stint at Arsenal and a return as Villareal manager in 2021.
Classic at the Santiago Bernabéu
Real Madrid and Chelsea gave us a match for the ages. Both teams went to war back and forth from the start, but Chelsea was the dominant side. Fifteen minutes from the match start, Chelsea got the goal they needed when mount drove to the penalty box and scored past Real Madrid goalkeeper Thibaut Courtois. It remained 1-0 to Chelsea, but they were behind in aggregates 3-2 by halftime.
In the second half, things got interesting; ten minutes after halftime, Rudiger scored a header from a corner kick, giving Chelsea a considerable advantage. This has caused panic and shocked Real Madrid, the fans, and the manager. They couldn’t believe it, and we were about to witness another comeback for the ages. Things went from bad to worst for Real, as Chelsea scored the third goal, which was needed to advance to the semis and knock out real.
The third goal was scored by Timo Werner, as he dribbled defenders before he scored that vital goal. The comeback was complete as Chelsea set their sights on making it to the semi-finals. But ten minutes before the match ended, Madrid scored the goal that would take this match to extra time. With a magical ball, Luka Modric spotted Rodrygo, and then he managed to squish in and score a brilliant goal, giving real the goal they needed to keep their champions league hopes alive.
By the full time, it was 3-1 to Chelsea, the same scoreline as last week, and because of that, it went to extra time. Both teams were not tired, as both knew what time it was. Go hard or go home. Real Madrid took advantage as the leading man Karim Benzema header from Vinicius Jr cross, giving the real the advantage. It got intense until the end, and Real Madrid avoided a collapse and advanced through to the semis, Real Madrid 2-3 Chelsea, aggerates (5-4).
Unlucky Chelsea & how far can Villarreal go?
As I mentioned early, yesterday’s champions league was full of memorable events that no one will forget. Chelsea loses, yes, but they were winners too. I mentioned last week that Chelsea has a good away record in the champions league this season, and yesterday proved it. They came out full force and knew they had to go hard to advance to the next stage. They did everything right but fell short. Regardless, Chelsea should hold their head up high and be proud of themselves.
For Villarreal, how far can they go in the champions league? They beat Juventus at Turin in the last sixteen, and now they beat Bayern Munich at Munich. They are the David in this champions league, and every top team should be worried about it. For Villarreal, saying it’s impressive is an underestimate for making this far. It has been remarkable and gives Villarreal a good resume for the history books.
Chelsea is out and now has to focus on finishing strong in the premier league, and they have the fa cup semi-finals to look forward to. Real Madrid is through to the semis and must wait for either local rivals Atletico Madrid or Manchester City to advance. At the same time, Villarreal waits for either Liverpool or Benfica to qualify for their match.
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