Manchester City kept their cool in the hostile surroundings of the Wanda Metropolitano Stadium to reach the semi-finals of the Champions League with a 1-0 win against Atletico Madrid on aggregate.
The second leg in Spain ended goalless, but was hardly without incident after Felipe was sent off after being shown a second yellow card for a dangerous tackle on Phil Foden in the closing moments of the match. His first booking came after an arm to the head of the same player, which drew blood from the England international.
Stefan Savic was seen pulling the hair of Jack Grealish as players from both sides clashed in a heated exchange, as Atletico tried to intimidate Pep Guardiola’s side, who stayed focused to see the job through. Although, raised tempers appear to have continued following the full time whistle, with footage from the tunnel showing players continuing to clash.
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Speaking to BT Sport after the match, City defender John Stones said, “We know that they sometimes try and make things happen like that and we dealt with it really well. It is not nice to talk about and I don't want to dwell on it because over the two legs we played incredible against such an experienced side in what they do, we kept our tempers and it is easy to get drawn into stuff like that.”
"We knew it was not an easy place to come, it is a hostile environment, it was a difficult night all round and how we defended and controlled ourselves over the two legs was incredible”, he said.
Foden was a constant nuisance for Madrid, whose consistent fouling of the 21-year-old suggested they had little idea of how to defend against him.
Stones praised his performance and maturity, saying, “Phil was such a threat in both games, instant impact in the first and how he drove us up the pitch tonight, gained yards and free-kicks - I think he is feeling it now.”
Manager Pep Guardiola wanted to focus on the football at full time, rather than the antics on display throughout and he knew it was always going to be a tough tie.
"It is the champion of Spain and they played with energy and in second half were better than us and we were lucky we didn't concede. In the first half we had chances, overall we are in the semi-finals - it is well deserved”, he said.
"The opponent is so tough, all the teams in Champions League come here and suffer so it is important we go through."
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