Champions League, Manchester City and Liverpool reach semis: Records broken
Manchester City weathered a storm by Atletico Madrid to prevail in a 0-0 affair in the second leg of the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals. The draw was enough as City advanced to the semis with a 1-0 aggregate score. Atletico stepped up in the second half but couldn't get a goal. Meanwhile, Liverpool were held by Benfica (3-3). The Reds advanced 6-4 on aggregate.
The first half was goalless and there weren't many chances with IIkay Gundogan coming close for Man City after he struck the post. Atletico came alive in the second half and had chances but failed to take them. Antoine Griezmann and Rodrigo De Paul couldn't test Ederson with their shots, shooting wide. City held on and made sure they got the job done.
Liverpool and Benfica were involved in a six-goal burst at Anfield. Ibrahima Konate handed Liverpool the lead with a powerful header. Goncalo Ramos equalized minutes later. Roberto Firmino put the Reds ahead once again in the 55th minute and scored his second 10 minutes later. Roman Yaremchuk pulled one back before Darwin Núnez leveled the score. However, it wasn't enough as Liverpool progressed.
Nunez has now scored six Champions League goals in 2021-22. As per Opta, this is the most by a Benfica player in a single season in the competition, surpassing Nuno Gomes, who netted five in 1998-99. Firmino (20) has become the fourth Liverpool player to score 20+ times in the European Cup/Champions League, after Salah (33), Sadio Mane (22) and Steven Gerrard (21).
Konate has become the fourth Liverpool player to score in both legs of a Champions League quarter-final tie after the likes of Peter Crouch vs PSV in 2006-07, Mohamed Salah vs Man City in 2017-18, and Roberto Firmino vs Porto in 2018-19.
As per Squawka, Firmino has now scored six goals in seven Champions League games against Portuguese oppositions. Firmino equaled the Champions League goals tally of Fernando Torres (20). Nunez is now the fourth-highest scorer across top-flight European competitions this season (32). He is behind Robert Lewandowski (47), Karim Benzema (38), and Sebastian Haller (33).
Firmino has netted 11 goals this season in all competitions. He has bettered his tally from the 2020-21 campaign (9). As per Opta, the Brazilian has scored at Anfield in the Champions League for the first time since March 2020 (vs Atletico Madrid).
As per William Hill, Pep Guardiola is the first manager in UCL history to reach the semi-finals in nine different seasons - 2008-09, 2009-10, 2010-11, 2011-12, 2013-14, 2014-15, 2015-16, 2020-21, and 2021-22. He won the trophy twice (2008-09, 2010-11) and reached the final last season.