Manchester City Beat PSG to Reach First Champions League Final

Manchester City squared off against Paris St Germain in the second leg of their Champions League Semi Final on a wet and icy Manchester evening looking to finish off what they started in Paris a week ago.

Pep Guardiola made wholesale changes from the weekend victory away at Crystal Palace, with only Ederson and Fernandinho retaining their spots. Rúben Dias partnered John Stones in defense with Kyle Walker and Oleksandr Zinchenko at full back. İlkay Gündoğan came into central midfield alongside Fernandinho whilst in front of them were Kevin De Bruyne, Phil Foden, Riyad Mahrez and Bernardo Silva.

For PSG, Mauricio Pochettino was without Kylian Mbappé who failed a late fitness test and Angel Di Maria came in for the Frenchman to complete an attacking triumvirate with Neymar and Mauro Icardi. Marco Verratti, Leandro Paredes and Ander Herrera completed the midfield with none of these players starting at the weekend. The back four and goalkeeper were unchanged with captain Marquinhos would look to lead a back line hoping to shut out their opposition.

Man City took the lead through Mahrez but the goal was all Ederson. The goalkeeper spotted Zinchenko on the wide left pushed up to the half way and lofted a pass into the onrushing Ukranian’s path. Zinchenko then reversed a pass to De Bruyne on the edge of the box and his shot was blocked with the ball ricocheting into the path of Mahrez who side footed through the legs of Navas.

Man City applied the final nail to the coffin of PSG with another swift counter attack. De Bruyne was found with an outlet pass who laid it wide to Phil Foden. The midfielder carried the ball forward before playing a one two with De Bruyne. The Belgian laid it into the path of Foden running at full pace and the English international slid the ball across the box to an unmarked Mahrez who fired into the roof of the net to give City a 4-1 lead on aggregate.

Di María then was sent off for a stamp on Fernandinho. As the time ticked by tempers began to fray and the Argentine had a coming together with the Man City midfielder over on the touchline. The ball went out for a throw in and Fernandinho appeared unhappy with Di María and followed the PSG winger off the pitch and stepped across him as he tried to pick up the ball. Reacting angrily Di María then stamped on the Brazilian and the referee went straight to his pocket and reached for a red card.

As the space opened up, Man City began to create more chances and Foden was at the heart of a lot of their best work. The midfielder hit the post after getting in behind Kimpembe and striking across goal whilst another low-effort was well saved by Navas in the center of the goal.

PSG failed to create anything after the sending off and committed a series of fouls as the frustration at their impending defeat was clear to see.

With the final whistle, City had cruised into their first Champions League Final and the feeling begins to grow that this is the culmination of all Guardiola’s hard work with this side and will now await the winner of the second Semi-Final between Real Madrid and Chelsea.