Manchester City failed make use of home-ground advantage following their goalless draw against Real Madrid at the Etihad Stadium in the Champions League semi-final first leg on Tuesday evening.
- Manchester City 0 Real Madrid 0
- All to play for in second leg
- Late Hart acrobatics keep Real out
- Pepe stops late City scoring attempt
City have a mountain to climb in the second leg after they were held by Los Blancos, who were without Cristiano Ronaldo after he failed a late fitness test. A late surge could have seen either team snatch victory.
— Manchester City FC (@MCFC) April 26, 2016
City midfielder Fernandinho tried to make a run into the opposition half but a tough tackle from Casemiro stopped him in his tracks in the opening moments.
There appeared to be hesitation from the home side to push players into advanced territory on the field. The Spanish giants were likewise happy to hold back and wait for their opponents to make a mistake.
In the 29th minute Gareth Bale found some space on the right flank but he was quickly swarmed by a City defender and dispossessed of the ball.
The match started to become a lot more physical as both teams were unable to create clear goal-scoring opportunities. City captain Vincent Kompany ensured that every loose ball in their half was cleared out of danger.
Luka Modric got the ball from his own half to unleash Toni Kroos, but that move was thwarted by Bacary Sagna.
In the second half, Sergio Aguero got close to opening the scoring but a last-gasp tackle from Sergio Ramos kept him out.
Modric and Kroos then took control of the game and put pressure on the Citizens’ defence. Dani Carvajal hit the crossbar in the 72nd minute from a set-piece play from the defence.
City goalkeeper Joe Hart miracle a number of miraculous saves late in the match to keep out powerful shots from Pepe and Casemiro.
In the last minute Pepe was the hero for the visitors as he dispossessed Rahim Sterling, who a chance to score.
— Real Madrid C. F. (@realmadrid) April 26, 2016