Manchester City Trounces Real Madrid

Eli Meisel, Staff Member

On the 15th of May, the football club Manchester City earned their place in the champions league final by crushing Real Madrid in the semifinal. Both clubs each contain some of the most talented players in the world, but Manchester City rose to the occasion with an energetic performance and excellent execution. The teams played the first leg of the semi-final on May 9th, drawing one-one. The match-up was tight, though Manchester City had the advantage of playing in their own stadium, the Etihad. As the game jumps into action, City immediately takes control, leading by twenty percent in possession. The Portuguese Right-wing for City, Bernando Silva, knocked two goals in before the end of the first half, tilting the game in City’s favor. Though Real Madrid let in two goals before the half, their goalie, Thibaut Courtois, stopped many scoring opportunities, including a header from Erling Haaland. In the second half, Manchester City increased their lead by two more goals, thickening the gap in the score and ensuring their triumphant win over Madrid.

One reason Real Madrid was defeated by their opponent was because of their lack of effort in their superstars. Karim Benzema, the last Ballon d’Or winner, is Real Madrid’s starting striker. According to Jack Lang of the Athletic media company, “Benzema was arguably the biggest disappointment of all. The Frenchman barely mustered a touch of note all evening, repeatedly getting maneuvered off the ball by Ruben Dias and John Stones” (Lang). Benzema was not the only Madrid player who played poor that game, for Real Madrid Midfielder Rodrygo also lacked touches on the ball. In order to win a game, everyone must show confidence in showing for the ball and connecting with one another, Madrid’s superstars lacked this confidence.

Sometimes all it takes to win a game is a one-star player to come through with a win, and for Manchester City, that player was BernandoSilva. Silva sliced through Madrid, finding space wherever he could on the pitch. He may be the smallest man on the field, but Silva does not hesitate to strive past those who stand over him. Daniel Taylor of the Athletic media company emphasizes Silva’s skills when he says, “That movement, that appreciation of space, the anticipation of knowing where the ball is going to come. And then the calmness to make sure that, if Toni Kroos isn’t going to follow your run, or Luka Modric stands as still as a stalagmite, they aren’t going to get away with it” (Taylor). Soccer is not just a game of moving with the ball, but also moving off the ball. In this very game against Real Madrid, Silva showcased his skill of finding space off the ball and using it to score two goals.

This conflict between Real Madrid and Manchester City will never be forgotten, both by the City fans who will continue to brag about it, and the Real Madrid fans who still have nightmares of the game. Though losing a champions league semifinal match four to zero seems like Real Madrid should rebuild, I do wish Real Madrid and each of their players bury this awful memory and get back on their feet in the future.