Manchester City were carrying the favorite tag going into this one and many have even tipped the Pep Guardiola side to go all the way to the final and probably win the elusive and 1st Champions league trophy for the Club. Manchester City manager was quoted to have mentioned in his pre-match press conference that the pressure is always on the team to deliver a UCL trophy. The French side Olympic Lyon came into the tie after haven dumped Juventus out of the competition in the previous round of 16 and they came into this obviously with a game plan and with lots of confidence which was obvious in their play as they defended tenaciously and contained City well in the early exchanges despite the fact the City had all the possession and were majorly in control of the ball, but Lyon against the run of play got the 1st goal on the night in the 24th minute through Maxwell Cornet who has a thing for scoring against City, the man in the middle, referee took time on the sidelines visiting the screen for a bit to consult VAR and the goal stood to give Lyon 1-0 lead. The Cityzens pressed even harder after the Lyon goal in search for the eqaliser but they were limited to a couple of half chances as they were not able to put the ball in the back of Lyon goal as it ended 1-0 at the end of half time.
The complexion of the game was not any different after the period of half time as Manchester City grew more into the game and were bossing the match in terms of possessions and control of the ball, but all efforts were met by a dogged Lyon defensive set up blocking everything thrown at them by the City players. A period of decisiveness from Kevin De Bruyne was all that was needed for City to level matters at the Estádio José Alvalade when after a nice build up play which saw Riyad Mahrez cut open the Lyon defense and played the ball on to Raheem Sterling who put a ball across to De Bruyne who calmly put the ball beyond Anthony Lopes in goal for Lyon and it became all square at the 69th minute and it looked like City were back in it as they had a brilliant spell afterwards and seemed like they were going to get the next goal of the match to put the match beyond Rudi Garcia’s men, but it was not be as Lyon would get ahead of City again in the 79th minutes courtesy a nice play from Houssem Aouar from Lyon who cuts the City defense open and put a through ball for substitute Mousaa Dembele who was brought in to replace Memphis Depay who was having a quite night, Dembele found himself in one on one situation with ManCity goalkeeper Ederson and he was calm enough to fire his team into the lead with 11 minutes to regulation time, There was a period of stop for the referee to consult VAR yet again to see replays of the build up to the goal, but the goal stood and City must feel hard done by the decision as there was foul spotted in the build up to the goal.
City added some urgency to their play and it almost paid off in the 86th minutes as a chance fell kindly for Raheem Sterling to pounce on from 6 yards and all he needed to do was just tap into an empty goal but somehow his shot went agonizingly over the bar. Then immediately after the City missed opportunity, the next piece of play would see former Arsenal youth player Jeff Reine-Adelaide drive the ball forward for Lyon and his pass met Houssem Aouar who played a shot towards Ederson’s goal but the City goalkeeper parried the ball into the part of Moussa Dembele who responded swiftly to the rebound to get his second goal of the night and send Lyon into the Semifinal of the Champions league.
City pilled even further pressure in the closing stages of the game but it was already too late as Lyon had gotten the job done and would now be playing Bayern Munich in last 4 of the UCL on August 19th.
A Man of the match performance for Moussa Dembele as his two strikes were decisive and his goals were all that made the difference for Lyon.
Lyon vs Bayern Munich (August 19, Estadio da Luz)
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