Manchester City overpowers Bayern Munich – Inter does good business at Benfica
This was our liveblog on two Champions League quarterfinals:
The duels are over: City and Inter do good business
The first two quarterfinal matches have been played. Manchester City settles 3-0 with Bayern Munich and Inter wins 2-0 visiting Benfica.
We’ll be back with you tomorrow with the other two quarterfinals: AC Milan – Napoli and Real Madrid – Chelsea.
MCI-BAY | 90′ Critical message Bayern fans
Bayern Munich supporters just showed a critical text about the owners of Manchester United (the Glazers) and Manchester City (Sheikh Mansour).
“All autocrats out,” it reads. “Football belongs to the people.”
MCI-BAY | 87′ Sommer saves Bayern
Had Sommer not been so good at goalkeeping tonight, Bayern really would have been finessed. The Swiss keeper was hopeless on the counter goals and really managed to keep five balls out in magnificent fashion.
In front of him, defender Upamecano, on the other hand, had an incredibly difficult time. It all seemed to go a notch too fast for De Ligt’s French companion.
BEN-INT | 82′ Goal Internazionale!
Lukaku shoots off from eleven yards. The penalty kick was given after Gilberto touched a Dumfries cross with his hand.
It is a hugely important goal for Inter, who seem to be taking a big step towards the last four in this way.
Benfica – Internazionale 0-2
MCI-BAY | 77′ Manchester City goal!
It’s 3-0 in Manchester. This diptych seems as good as decided already.
Three guesses who scored the third goal for City…Haaland of course. It is the Norwegian striker’s eleventh Champions League goal this season.
Manchester City – Bayern Munich: 3-0
MCI-BAY | 71′ Manchester City goal!
Bernardo Silva heads in the 2-0. Upamecano makes his second mistake in the build-up in this match and this time it is punished harshly.
The assist was from Haaland.
Manchester City – Bayern Munich 2-0
BEN-INT | 64′ Neres in at Benfica
Neres is allowed another half hour at Benfica. It won’t be easy for him to force something, because after the 0-1 Inter keeps things tightly shut.
The Italians become most dangerous themselves most of the time and, moreover, have just brought in Lukaku.
MCI-BAY | 63′ Panna hat-trick Bernardo Silva
Bernardo Silva gates three Bayern defenders in one dribble. It ultimately accomplishes little, but it is beautiful.
If he had done this in the schoolyard earlier, he would have been the boss for a week.
MCI-BAY | 55′ Bayern gets stronger
The first half was for City, but after halftime Bayern was the better team. De Ligt just almost headed in the equalizer, but Aké just managed to block his effort.
Moments earlier, Sané was dangerous again with a good shot from distance.
BEN-INT | 52′ Goal Internazionale!
It’s 0-1 for Inter. Barella steams forward and heads a measured cross from Bastoni backwards into the corner.
Benfica – Internazionale 0-1
MCI-BAY | 49′ Chances back and forth
Sané breaks through on the left flank and pops at goal. There, however, Brazilian goalkeeper Ederson is quick in the corner. Moments later Upamecano fumbles and City becomes dangerous.
We are playing soccer again in Lisbon and Manchester. At Bayern Munich, De Ligt is just there again. The defender had to be treated briefly shortly before halftime after he sprained himself.
There are no substitutions on either pitch.
Netherlands wins practice match with Poland with good soccer
Exactly one hundred days before the start of the Women’s World Cup, the Netherlands beat Poland 4-1 in a practice match at Het Kasteel in Rotterdam.
National coach Andries Jonker, who was extraordinarily satisfied with the game shown on Friday despite the 1-0 defeat against top nation Germany, saw his team once again give a very attractive performance.
Poland is not a World Cup contender, but proved to be a level opponent. Still, the Orange convinced from start to finish with dominant play.
Chelsea to Madrid with Kanté, Mount and Thiago Silva
Chelsea can have N’Golo Kanté, Mason Mount and Thiago Silva back in their first game with Real Madrid in the Champions League quarterfinals on Wednesday. All three have recovered from injuries.
Mount and Thiago Silva were sidelined for several weeks with knee injuries. Frank Lampard, who is finishing the season as interim coach following the sacking of Graham Potter, will be able to call on the players again against Real Madrid, who, like Kanté, are usually base players.
Rest at Manchester and Liverpool
At the two quarter-finals, it is time for the break. City-Bayern has been a delightful duel so far, played at a murderous pace.
The other match, Benfica – Inter, just won’t come off.
MCI-BAY | 40′ Pain for De Ligt
De Ligt sprained himself at a corner and was in a lot of pain. Fortunately, the damage does not seem to be too bad, as he got back in after a short treatment.
MCI-BAY | 33′ Sommer saves Bayern
A feat of creative goalkeeping saves Bayern. Sommer was already on the ground after an initial save and stops the rebound by lifting a foot while lying down anyway.
Handsomely done by the experienced Swiss, who often excels for Bayern.
MCI-BAY | 27′ Manchester City goal!
There is the deserved lead for City. Rodri gets plenty of time from Kimmich and shoots the ball from distance with the inside of his left foot into the cross.
Manchester City – Bayern Munich 1-0
BEN-INT | 25′ Good shot Acerbi
Still rather little life in the game at Benfica – Inter. The Italian visitors do report a bit more often up front.
A nice distance shot by Acerbi flew just over.
MCI-BAY | 22′ Haaland misses chance
Haaland had the ball in front of him, but finishes too hastily. Given the form he is in, many City supporters probably already counted him out.
A goal for City does hang in the air a bit.
MCI-BAY | 14′ Bayern under pressure
City is chasing full out and Bayern is struggling with that. Goalkeeper Sommer was just shocked when he got the ball just before the goal line and Haaland suddenly came running at him like a madman.
Sommer just managed to kick the ball away, otherwise Haaland would have buffeted it straight into the goal.
In Lisbon, Benfica – Inter don’t really want to get going yet. Benfica has more ball possession, but that is also because Inter seems to find that relaxed.
Dumfries hasn’t been on the ball much on the right flank yet. He faces former Feyenoord player Aursnes.
MCI-BAY | 5′ First shot Haaland
The Etihad jumps up as Haaland gives himself some space through a good approach. The Norwegian is able to strike, but pegs the ball high over.
In the first few minutes the game undulates back and forth nicely and is certainly not boring. There were no real chances yet.
Both matches started
In Manchester and in Lisbon, the Champions League anthem has sounded and kicked off!
MCI-BAY | De Ligt awaits leaden task
In fifteen minutes, the Dutchman may go up against the terror of the European fields: Erling Haaland.
Excelsior-Feyenoord sold out in 5 minutes
Why would that be? Because then Feyenoord might just become champions of the Netherlands of course.
In the comments below the post, Excelsior responds to joking Feyenoord fans, who remark that Excelsior is very much alive these days.
“All season long you know,” is the response. “Also Friday against Go Ahead it’s full house here.”
Napoli must permanently miss Osimhen against Milan
Italian frontrunners Napoli will have to do without top marksman Victor Osimhen tomorrow at the visit of AC Milan. The Nigerian has been out for a while with an injury and did not train with the group today.
Obvious replacements are Giovanni Simeone and Giacomo Raspadori.
BEN-INT | The lineups
At Benfica, Fredrik Aursnes starts in the starting lineup, hanging from the left side. David Neres starts on the bench.
Inter starts with Denzel Dumfries, not always sure of a starting spot this season. Romelu Lukaku is passed over in favor of Edin Dzeko.
MCI-BAY | The lineups
Two Dutchmen will soon start this absolute top match: Nathan Aké at City and Matthijs de Ligt at Bayern Munich.
At the Germans, Daley Blind, Noussair Mazraoui and Ryan Gravenberch are on the bench.
Schmidt praises former Feyenoord player Aursnes: ‘Very intelligent’
Benfica coach Roger Schmidt has a high opinion of former Feyenoord player Fredrik Aursnes. The Norwegian plays in the starting line-up every week and provides balance just as he did at the Kuip.
“I’m even a little surprised that he has adapted so quickly,” Schmidt said a month ago. “He is very complete, very intelligent and he also has enormous running ability.”
Aursnes, by the way, often plays a bit higher up the pitch at Benfica than in his Feyenoord days. He has so far played 35 duels for the team from Lisbon and scored once.
Also tonight: the Dutch women practice against Poland
And we have a liveblog for that too, which you can follow via this link! In the stadium of Sparta Rotterdam both teams will face each other starting at 20:00. It is the penultimate test for national coach Andries Jonker’s team before the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, which will be held next summer in July and August.
The soccer players of the Netherlands will play another practice match with Belgium shortly before the World Cup. The “away match” will take place on Sunday, July 2 (8:45 p.m.) in Kerkrade.
Kluivert sidelined with hamstring injury at Valencia for now
Justin Kluivert cannot be in action for Spanish soccer club Valencia for the time being. The 23-year-old Amsterdammer is struggling with a hamstring injury, suffered Sunday in the 2-1 lost league match against Almería. Kluivert had to be substituted shortly before half-time.
The former player of Ajax and AS Roma, among others, scored five goals in La Liga this season for Valencia, which is 27 points below the relegation line. Kluivert is Valencia’s top league scorer together with Edinson Cavani.
Matthijs de Ligt has completely found his feet at Bayern Munich. The defender started somewhat laboriously after his transfer from Juventus to Germany, but has been one of his new team’s best players for months now.
Last weekend, De Ligt scored the winning goal for Bayern in spectacular fashion on a visit to Freiburg. From about thirty yards he chased the ball into the crossbar.
Battle with Haaland
So now awaits the titanic battle with City striker Erling Haaland. “Perhaps the best striker in the world,” De Ligt believes. “You can’t stop him with one man, our whole team has to do that collectively.”
Bayern Munich eliminated Paris Saint-Germain in the previous round, but Manchester City rates the in-form De Ligt a little higher. He scored another stunning goal in the league match against Freiburg last weekend.
“I don’t think there is a stronger opponent than Manchester City,” De Ligt said. “I can hardly wait for this match to start, but knowing that it will be very complicated.”
De Ligt: ‘For analysis Haaland I don’t need images’
How is Neres actually doing at Benfica?
Former Ajax player David Neres left Shakhtar Donetsk for Benfica around the outbreak of war in Ukraine. Under Roger Schmidt, he surged ahead in Lisbon and regained his old level that he became known for at Ajax.
Last winter he briefly lost his starting spot after an injury, but after a month Neres managed to regain it. The Brazilian does not really score enough goals, but from the flanks or from the ‘number 10’ he does provide threat and depth.
In the eighth finals of the Champions League, Neres was important for his team with a goal against Club Brugge.
What should De Ligt do (or not do) to rein in Haaland?
The task for Bayern – and Matthijs de Ligt – is to stop cannonball Erling Haaland. But how do you stop one of the best strikers in the world?
If you search “how to stop Haaland” on Google you will get over 10 million hits, including an “instructional video” from the German Bundesliga.
Haaland already scored 44 goals in 38 games in his first season at City, including 10 in the Champions League in six games. So that question is not so crazy. But the answer possibly is, because: to stop Haaland, do you have to focus on… Haaland?
Welcome to our liveblog on the first two quarterfinals in the Champions League: Manchester City – Bayern Munich and Benfica – Internazionale. Both duels start at 9 p.m.
Especially the titanic battle between City striker Erling Haaland and Bayern defender Matthijs de Ligt