Real Madrid battled back to stun Bayern Munich and book passage to a seventh straight semi-final with a contentious 4-2 win after extra time in the second leg in Madrid thanks to a Cristiano Ronaldo hat-trick.
Bayern, needing to score at least twice to have any chance of going through, set about attacking Madrid from the outset, putting the home defence under plenty of pressure in the first half, although it was only after the break that they found the back of the net.
Arjen Robben went down under Casemiro’s challenge in the box, a moment that saw the already-booked Madrid midfielder fortuitously avoid a second yellow. It was the first of several key decisions to go Madrid’s way.
Robert Lewandowski’s penalty levelled the tie on aggregate, although Madrid were still going through on away goals.
Robert Lewandowski in all competitions for Bayern Munich this season:— Squawka Football (@Squawka) April 18, 2017
41 games 🏃
39 goals ⚽
Such composure. pic.twitter.com/djx7i6YZnp
Their progress seemed confirmed when they withstood the Bayern pressure before hitting back to find an equaliser, Ronaldo steering a header past Manuel Neuer from Casemiro’s cross to put Madrid back ahead on aggregate. But that was simply a prelude for what was to come.
Sergio Ramos, no stranger to dramatic late goals, was credited with one in his own net this time to draw Bayern level. It was a scrappy goal, but it put the tie on a knife’s edge, with the score 3-3 on aggregate and both sides having tallied two away goals.
There was more drama to come as Arturo Vidal was sent off for a second yellow card, for a challenge that looked like a perfectly good tackle.
How is that a foul? Bayern Munich got robbed. And then they say Uefalona 😂😂 pic.twitter.com/7uO9EL28Bt— Barca World (@FCBarcelonaHome) April 18, 2017
Despite going down to ten men, Bayern Munich looked the likelier team to score a goal for the remainder of normal time, but they couldn’t get the winner.
Madrid began to assert themselves again in extra time, and with the man advantage, it was only a matter of time before they exploited tiring Bayern legs to go ahead. The pivotal goal was again controversial as Ronaldo was clearly offside when he received the ball, before expertly lashing a finish past Neuer.
The home side put the tie to bed in the second half of extra time, with Ronaldo completing his hat-trick after an excellent run from Marcelo and Marco Asensio adding gloss to the scoreline with a mazy run and exquisite finish.
Real Madrid become the first team EVER through to the semi finals of the Champions League for SEVEN successive seasons— Phil Kitromilides (@PhilKitro) April 18, 2017
Meanwhile, Atletico Madrid have advanced to their third Champions League semi-final in four years after getting a 1-1 away draw against Leicester City to win 2-1 on aggregate.
Saul’s first-half goal meant Leicester needed to score three on the night to progress, and although Jamie Vardy got one, ultimately the Atletico defence was too strong.
The Foxes were dominant after Vardy’s goal and came close to getting a second to set up a grandstand finish, but the defending Premier League champions’ Champions League fairy tale is at an end.
Thank you, Leicester City. Greatly enjoyed your journey the last two seasons.— Grant Wahl (@GrantWahl) April 18, 2017
MOMENT OF THE NIGHT
Jamie Vardy's Atletico party just started, 1-1! pic.twitter.com/v4aC1oviEC— Mootaz (@MHChehade) April 18, 2017
While the Real Madrid-Bayern Munich game had all the thrilling moments, as well as plenty of controversial ones, Jamie Vardy’s goal at the King Power Stadium gets the nod here. For a brief, euphoric moment, it seemed Leicester City might just be capable of one more miracle.
Marco Asensio. 21 anys. Mallorquí. Fa 2 anys jugava a 2a. Avui ha fet això amb el Madrid a la Copa d'Europa. Al Bayern. Descomunal. pic.twitter.com/vKNLHWSZcW— Àngel Aguiló Palou (@AngelAguiloP) April 18, 2017
It came when the tie was all but beyond doubt, but Marco Asensio’s interception, run, and finish confirmed what a talent the 21-year-old is.
The Bundesliga and Bayern Munich accounts have their say on Munich’s second goal…
Cometh the hour, cometh the man…and tonight, cometh a century. What a career Cristiano Ronaldo’s had.
Cristiano Ronaldo: A hat-trick tonight vs Bayern Munich means Ronaldo becomes the first player to score 100 Champions League goals pic.twitter.com/F6GtBwNYZH— WhoScored.com (@WhoScored) April 18, 2017
PLAYER OF THE NIGHT
That man Ronaldo. Every time the whispers get louder about the Portuguese star’s powers being on the wane, Ronaldo delivers the perfect riposte. A hat-trick against Bayern Munich in the Champions League quarter-finals to bring up 100 Champions League goals – who writes this man’s scripts?
Cristiano Ronaldo has now scored 46 career hat-tricks for club & country.— Squawka Football (@Squawka) April 18, 2017
Real Madrid (41)
Man Utd (1)
Hat-trick merchant 3⃣️ pic.twitter.com/InntV4XUk0