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Barcelona defender Dani Alves said “there is no such thing as luck” as he greeted the tough rivals Real Madrid’s remarkable late comeback victory against Manchester City.
The Spanish champions reached an epic semi-final on Wednesday with City 6-5 overall to create a showdown with Liverpool – a repeat of the 2018 final – in Paris on 28 May.
Rodrygo scored twice in 91 seconds to save extra time for Madrid, who were trailing 5-3 overall with less than a minute left of normal time.
Karim Benzema’s penalty kick in the extra period sealed Los Blancos’ passage on to a record-breaking 17th European Cup / Champions League final, which is six more than any other team.
It is the third knockout round in a row that Carlo Ancelotti’s men, who secured another league title in three years this weekend, have recovered.
Since the Champions League format changed in 2003-04, Madrid are the first team to lose a match in the last 16 (1-0 against Paris Saint-Germain), the quarter-final (3-2 against Chelsea) and the semi-final ( 4-3 against Man City) and still reach the final.
And Brazilian international full-back Alves does not believe it is a coincidence that Madrid got another almighty fightback.
“Like in life, there is no such thing as luck,” Alves wrote shortly after full-time. “Either you dominate the game, or the game dominates you.”
Alves praised the late impact of Rodrygo with two goals, being the first player in Champions League history to score twice in the 90th minute of a knockout match, adding: “Oh, what would football be without the Brazilians ! “
With 11 goals spread across the two legs, Madrid’s memorable victory against City is the second highest scoring semi-final in the history of the competition, only after Liverpool’s 7-6 victory against Roma in 2017-18.
The Reds are waiting for Madrid at the Stade de France later this month after surviving their own scare before beating Villarreal 5-2 on Tuesday.