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Champions League Team of the Week – Quarter-final second legs

The UEFA Champions League’s final four is set following the completion of the competition’s quarter-finals.

Manchester City have reached the semi-finals for a third consecutive campaign after completing the job at Bayern Munich, and will face Real Madrid in a rematch of last season’s classic. The other tie is also one not to miss, as the two Milan sides go head-to-head for a place in the final.

Following this week’s quarter-final action, we’ve selected our Champions League Team of the Week.


Goalkeeper: Mike Maignan – AC Milan

Mike Maignan was excellent once again as AC Milan reached the semi-finals for the first time since 2006/07. The goalkeeper was composed with the ball at his feet and alert off his line to deal with danger, as Napoli struggled to find a way past the Rossoneri rearguard.

Maignan’s penalty save from Khvicha Kvaratskhelia was the highlight in a commanding performance from the Frenchman, who on current form is one of European football’s best number ones.

The future of the France national side is, literally, in safe hands with Maignan having conceded just one goal in the Champions League’s knockout rounds to date.

Right-back: Davide Calabria – AC Milan

Davide Calabria had the unenviable task of shackling Khvicha Kvaratskhelia this week, but the right-back competed brilliantly in his duel with Napoli’s dangerman.

Calabria won eight tackles, nine ground duels and made six clearances, as a 1-1 draw in Naples booked AC Milan a semi-final date with city rivals Inter. Their captain was a major part of that success, after a display of determined defending against one of Europe’s best widemen.

Centre-back: Ruben Dias – Manchester City

Outstanding again, from Manchester City’s defensive rock.

Dias produced a magnificent display of defending as City drew 1-1 at Bayern Munich to reach a third consecutive semi-final, with the Portugal international standing strong in the face of firm pressure from the home side.

The 25-year-old appears to have the bit between his teeth in City’s pursuit of trophies this season, willing to throw his body on the line – including one goal-line clearance at Bayern – for the cause. City are unbeaten since his return from injury and that statistic is no coincidence. Arguably the best centre-back in the world right now.

Centre-back: Simon Kjaer – AC Milan

AC Milan’s defensive leader was a towering presence as the Italians reached the last four, marshalling his side’s backline and largely keeping Napoli’s Victor Osimhen quiet. Kjaer made eight clearances, won duels and was calm on the ball under pressure as Napoli sought to get back into the tie.

His reaction to Mike Maignan’s penalty save showcased his leadership, as the Denmark defender cut short the celebrations of his teammates to organise Milan’s defence for the resulting set-piece.

Left-back: Federico Dimarco – Inter Milan

Federico Dimarco was at his creative best as Inter Milan reached the semi-finals after a thrilling draw with Benfica.

Inter took a two-goal lead into the second leg and progressed after a 3-3 draw at the San Siro in the return, with Dimarco providing two assists for Simone Inzaghi’s side. The wing-back burst into the box to tee up Lautaro Martinez for Inter’s second, before his pass led to Joaquin Correa putting the tie beyond Benfica.

An outlet all evening, it’s now four goals and seven assists in all competitions for Dimarco this season, the best return of his career.

Midfield: Joshua Kimmich – Bayern Munich

Bayern Munich might have faced an almost impossible challenge to turn around their tie with Manchester City, but Joshua Kimmich was certainly not prepared to give up the fight.

The midfielder fought well in an ultimately losing battle for Bayern, with aggressive work off the ball and unerring composure in possession. Always available and demanding of the ball, Kimmich tried and tried as the Bundesliga champions fought to get back into the game.

Kimmich scored a late leveller on the night from the penalty spot, the first spot-kick of his senior career.

Midfield: Fede Valverde – Real Madrid

All-action as ever from Fede Valverde, whose work rate is a crucial cog in Real Madrid’s engine room. Valverde ran the length of the Stamford Bridge pitch to set up one chance against Chelsea, before driving into the box to assist Rodrygo’s second goal.

Valverde’s intensity is a vital part of the pressure Real Madrid apply high up the pitch, with the Uruguayan now producing the numbers to match his insatiable work-ethic. He has 12 goals and six assists in all competitions, each career-best numbers for the 24-year-old.

Right-wing: Kingsley Coman – Bayern Munich

The best player on the pitch during the first half of Bayern Munich’s draw with Manchester City, Coman was the one player who looked capable of making inroads back into the tie.

Coman gave Nathan Ake a torrid time as the defender struggled against the winger’s speed and sharp movement, while one brilliant spin away from Manuel Akanji led to a chance for Jamal Musiala.

Electric at times and a nightmare one-against-one, the France international needed more from those around him in the final third as Bayern crashed out in the quarter-finals for the third straight season.

Left-wing: Rafael Leao – AC Milan

What a talent.

Leao led AC Milan’s counter-attacking game against Napoli and often took the game to the home side alone. It was his driving run that led to a penalty for Milan, before a wonderful assist for Olivier Giroud after the forward had missed that earlier spot-kick.

Leao’s assist was out of this world as he glided forward past a succession of challenges before squaring for Giroud to tap home, the sort of individual brilliance that has become the norm for the Portugal international. If Milan are to reach a first final since 2007, he will be the key to their chances.

Forward: Rodrygo – Real Madrid

Rodrygo just loves the Champions League’s knockout rounds.

After crucial goals against Chelsea and Manchester City in last season’s competition, the forward is hoping history can repeat itself after two goals against the former this week.

Rodrygo was the bright spark of the Real Madrid front three at Stamford Bridge and scored twice to send the Spaniards into the semi-finals, arriving into the box to tuck home two close-range chances.

Forward: Lautaro Martinez – Inter

Lautaro Martinez ended his recent run without a goal to send Inter Milan into the Champions League semi-finals.

Martinez scored his side’s second on the night with a clinical finish from Federico Dimarco’s cross, the standout moment of a fine centre-forward performance from the World Cup winner.

The Argentine had earlier set up Nicolo Barella’s opener at the San Siro, to complete a performance that saw the forward win five ground duels, complete three dribbles, make two key passes, score and assist.

This was more like it from Martinez, as Inter set up a mouthwatering Milan showdown with AC in the last four.

Read – Remembering Mourinho’s Man United XI that Sevilla knocked out of the 2018 UCL

Read Also – Iconic Performances: Lewandowski’s four-goal destruction of Real Madrid

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