A year ago Manchester City suffered one of the most heartbreaking European defeats in their history against Real Madrid – but now they have the chance of revenge.
Last year City went into the final minute of the second leg at the Bernabeu just needing to not concede two goals.
Yet they conceded two goals. in dramatic fashion.
Having won a thrilling first leg 4-3 at Etihad Stadium, Riyad Mahrez gave City a 5-3 aggregate lead.
But substitute Rodrygo netted in the 90th and 91st minute, with Real’s first two shots on target.
Karim Benzema then scored an extra-time winner from the penalty spot to seal a stunning 6-5 aggregate triumph – and Carlo Ancelotti’s side went on to beat Liverpool in the final.
But is there is a real feeling things could be different this year after City’s 4-1 aggregate win over Bayern Munich to reach a third semi-final in a row – especially with 48-goal striker Erling Haaland in their ranks.
“I had a feeling we would see them,” said City boss Pep Guardiola, who once managed Real’s arch-rivals Barcelona.
“All clubs know if you want to win the Champions League you need to beat Real Madrid.”
Real have won 14 European Cups, twice as many as anybody else – including five of the past nine.
“Hopefully yes!” said City midfielder Bernardo Silva when asked about the chance of exacting revenge against the holders on 9 and 17 May, with the second leg at home.
“We will go for it definitely. We always go for it, but we feel the team is very, very confident at the minute. I think we are going through.”
Former City defender Nedum Onuoha was covering the game for BBC Radio 5 Live and thinks revenge will fuel their motivation.
“From a fan perspective they’re definitely thinking about that,” he added. “I think they know that going into that 90th minute last year they were going to the final again.
“If you are the team that beats Real Madrid in this competition you have to believe you can win it all.”
Joleon Lescott, also a former City defender, said …