Can Man City get revenge in Real Madrid rematch?

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 …

Germany’s perennial champions lack focal point and collective spirit and were very much second-best against Manchester City

Two hours and 53 minutes into this Champions League quarter-final, Bayern Munich finally scored. It was a Joshua Kimmich penalty, moot and meaningless, but still smashed into the very centre of the goal as if to make a point. Hey. Pssst. Lads. Maybe try aiming for the big netted thing. The one between the two metal things. It’s surprisingly roomy!

The finer details of this 4-1 aggregate defeat will be lost to the winds of history. Yet over the two legs of this tie, Bayern’s expected goal tally of 3.49 was just a fraction behind Manchester City’s at 4.23. Both sides got a dodgy penalty. Between the two boxes, as Pep Guardiola admitted afterwards, there was not a great deal to choose between them.

“Kings of the Cup!” read a giant banner unfurled in the Bayern end a few minutes before kick-off. The Südkurve shimmered with silver flags arranged in the shape of the Champions League trophy. The branding here was clear enough: this is our turf, our territory, our competition. Yet in reality it felt like a grand old club trying to cling on to its own idea of itself, desperately trying to animate with words and motifs a mythology they can no longer sustain on the pitch.

And so in retrospect, perhaps the emblematic moment of this game – if not the tie – came just 17 minutes in, when Leroy Sané was put clean through on goal by Jamal Musiala. It had been a dominant opening by Bayern, the Allianz crowd on its feet, Thomas Tuchel twitching and waving in his technical area. But Sané put his shot wide and that was essentially Bayern’s night in microcosm: guns spiked, blades blunted, one of Europe’s most dominant attacking teams reduced to pale smoke.

For those of us reared on some of the great Bayern sides of recent years – the punches in bunches, the serial demolitions of Barcelona – the spectacle of them not scoring can be a curiously disorienting …

Chelsea’s players were ‘taken aback’ by Todd Boehly’s decision to introduce Mykhailo Mudryk and his entourage inside the dressing room before a Premier League game this season, according to reports.

Chelsea beat Arsenal to sign Mudryk in an £88.5 million deal from Shakhtar Donetsk in the January transfer window.

The Ukraine international was officially unveiled at Stamford Bridge during the half-time break in Chelsea’s match against Crystal Palace on January 15.

But according to MailOnline, some of Chelsea’s players and staff were left surprised by Boehly’s decision to interrupt preparations before the game by allowing Mudryk and the winger’s advisors to enter the changing room at Stamford Bridge.

The report also claims that there is ‘growing discontent’ among the Chelsea squad, with many players considering their futures ahead of the summer transfer window.

Some of Chelsea’s players are also facing a significant wage reduction as a result of there being no Champions League football next season.

Meanwhile, Frank Lampard stressed after Chelsea’s Champions League exit at the hands of Real Madrid on Tuesday evening that some members of his squad still need time to adjust to English football.

‘There are some players that are maybe quite new here, getting used to the club and that maybe isn’t easy,’ Lampard said.

‘Some of the greatest players in the Premier League, when they first arrive they need sometimes need some time and sometimes they arrive and they’re put in and they find their feet and you see them flying. So maybe there’s a reason with some of our players where they need transitioning but in terms of motivation, you’re playing for Chelsea.

‘There’s individual motivations throughout the squad and there’s a collective. And for me, you have to be competitive with everything we do every day and to get into the team you have to show it.

‘The team today is what I felt was the most form team individually, the fittest team in terms of what this game was …