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Guardiola wowed by ‘incredible’ Man City trait in six-goal thriller with Real Madrid

In the end Pep Guardiola was just happy his Man City side were still alive in the tie after playing out a wild 3-3 draw with Real Madrid in the first leg of the Champions League quarter-finals. 

It was a night of stunning goals and wicked deflections as the two sides traded well placed punches but neither could deliver the final knockout blow on the night.

Bernardo Silva stunned the Estadio Santiago Bernabeu with a driven free kick that bested Andriy Lunin just over a minute into the match.

 

The hosts hit back almost immediately as Eduardo Camavinga’s long range effort deflected off Ruben Dias and into his own goal. Moments later a perfectly weighted pass from Vinicius Junior released Rodrygo into the final before nutmegging both Manuel Akanji and Stefan Ortega for the lead.

Those opening 14 minutes of madness were equalled by another mad 14-minute period in the second half, which was kicked off by Phil Foden equalising with a delicious finish to level matters.

Josko Gvardiol followed it up with a stunning strike of his own, recovering from a poor first touch to blast the ball into the net from 25 yards out.

 

It was an incredible way for the Kroat to grab his first ever goal for Man City, but the finish of the night belonged to Federico Valverde. Once again Vinicius delivered the ball, which the Spaniard hit first time on the volley low and hard into the far corner.

Guardiola was impressed by Man City‘s “incredible personality” to not let the game get away from them in the second half.

“We started really well but this is so difficult to come here, they defend really well and the pace they have up front is really amazing,” he told TNT Sports after the pulsating contest.

“We were a bit anxious with the ball in the first half, we lost a lot of balls and when that happens the team are so difficult to play against.

 

“The second half we showed incredible personality in the way we played. To come back from two or three would be difficult in Manchester. We played with composure, two fantastic goals.

“At the end Madrid, 77 minutes in this stadium they can do it. 3-3 we will take it and we have to win the next game to get to the semi-final.”

Guardiola singled out the performance of Gvardiol for praise. The defender was a doubt heading into Tuesday’s match but started the game at left-back.

 

“We were lucky he is with us and he could play today otherwise it would be difficult because we didn’t have players,” he said.

“The way he played was amazing, he played really really good. He’s a lovely guy so we’re really pleased to have him and score too.”

Man City will host Real Madrid for the second leg on 17 April.

Read – Five who played for both Real Madrid and Man City

See Also – The lowest Premier League points totals needed for Champions League qualification

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