Real Madrid vs Man City LIVE: Result and reaction from Champions League semi-final after wonder goals

Real Madrid host the first leg of their Champions League semi-final against Manchester City as they continue to chase another European trophy.

Having lost the La Liga title to Barcelona, Carlo Ancelotti’s side are targeting European glory to ensure their season ends on a high but they will face tough competition against Manchester City. Los Blancos have already progressed beyond two English clubs in the knockout rounds, beating Liverpool and Chelsea, and are looking to claim a third Premier League scalp on their way to the final.

Manchester City, meanwhile, are in outstanding form and desperately covet the continental crown that has so far eluded them. Pep Guardiola’s men are still on the hunt for a potential treble (Premier League, Champions League and FA Cup) this season. To get to the Istanbul final, though, they will have to get past the defending champions, with Carlo Ancelotti’s serial winners back in the last four and likely to provide a stern test.

Relive all the action as Real Madrid draw with Manchester City in the Champions League semi-final first leg:

Real Madrid vs Manchester City

  • Real Madrid host Manchester City in the Champions League semi-final first leg

  • 53’ SAVE! - Courtois denies De Bruyne from close range (RMA 1-0 MCI)

  • 50’ CHANCE! - Stones deflects Benzema’s shoot over the top (RMA 1-0 MCI)

  • 36’ GOAL! - Vinicius rockets Madrid into the lead (RMA 1-0 MCI)

  • 25’ CHANCE! - Dias’ last ditch block stops Benzema scoring a tap in (RMA 0-0 MCI)

  • 9’ SAVE! - De Bruyne calls Courtois into action with a shot from range (RMA 0-0 MCI)

Real Madrid CF 1 - 1 Manchester City FC

Full-time: Real Madrid 1-1 Man City

21:53 , Mike Jones

90+3 mins: There goes the final whistle. The match ends in a draw after two exceptional goals - one from Vinicius Jr and one from Kevin De Bruyne.

The Champions League semi-final is delicately poised going into the second leg at the Etihad Stadium. Can Manchester City win the tie from here or will Real Madrid win away from home to reach the final?

We’ll find out next week.

Real Madrid 1-1 Man City

21:50 , Mike Jones

90 mins: Save! Ederson comes to the rescue for Man City. Real Madrid work the ball beautifully around the edge of the box.

Karim Benzema lays the ball off to Aurelien Tchouameni who smokes one from range and forces the City goalkeeper to push the ball wide of the post!

Real Madrid 1-1 Man City

21:46 , Mike Jones

86 mins: Bernardo Silva is caught on his heels and fouls Vinicius Jr as the forward nips in front of him before he can clear the ball. The free kick results in a corner for Madrid.

Nacho comes on to replace Luka Modric before the corner is taken.

Real Madrid 1-1 Man City

21:45 , Mike Jones

85 mins: Aurelien Tchouameni comes on to replace Toni Kroos for the final few minutes. Pep Guardiola is unmoved on Man City’s bench.

It doesn’t look as though he’ll make any changes at all.

Real Madrid 1-1 Man City

21:43 , Mike Jones

82 mins: Marco Asensio replaces Rodrygo for Real Madrid with less than 10 minutes to play in this Champions League semi-final first leg.

City are having a decent period of possession now, Real Madrid are backing off them.

Real Madrid 1-1 Man City

21:40 , Mike Jones

79 mins: Camavinga goes in the book after losing control of the ball and knocking Rodri over trying to recover it. Carlo Ancelotti is preparing a change for the home side.

Marco Asensio is waiting on the sidelines. No movement from the City bench.

Real Madrid 1-1 Man City

21:38 , Mike Jones

76 mins: Kevin De Bruyne brings down Eduardo Camavinga and gifts Real Madrid another free kick just outside City’s box. This one is over on the left side of the pitch and gets lifted over to the far post.

Karim Benzema leaps towards the ball and wins it. His header is nodded towards the goal but Ederson sticks out a hand and forces it away!

Real Madrid 1-1 Man City

21:32 , Mike Jones

73 mins: David Alaba and Toni Kroos stand over a free kick after Ilkay Gundogan makes a foul just outside his own penalty area.

The angle isn’t great for Alaba’s left foot but he goes for goal anyway and fizzes a shot over the top.

Real Madrid 1-1 Man City

21:31 , Mike Jones

Real Madrid 1-1 Man City

21:30 , Mike Jones

70 mins: Real Madrid are trying to put pressure on the referee and the officials. The fans are whistling and jeering whenever a decision goes against them but that’s normal.

The Real coaching staff, including Carlo Ancelotti, are having serious words with all the officials. So much so Ancelotti earns himself a yellow card.

GOAL! Real Madrid 1-1 Man City (De Bruyne, 67’)⚽️

21:29 , Mike Jones

67 mins: Pick the one out! Rodri wins the ball high up the pitch and sends it out to Jack Grealish. He sends the ball into the feet of Ilkay Gundogan who knocks it back to Kevin De Bruyne.

He runs onto the ball and smokes it right into the top corner from range! Wonderful strike.

City are level.

Real Madrid 1-0 Man City

21:27 , Mike Jones

65 mins: Real Madrid have two penalty appeals turned down and the home fans are incensed that they haven’t been awarded a spot kick.

Both decisions were about City handling the ball inside the box and the referee made the correct call on both occasions.

Real Madrid 1-0 Man City

21:24 , Mike Jones

62 mins: Real Madrid have really turned up the heat on City. They’re starting to recover the ball high up the pitch and force the visitors deep into their own half.

Luka Modric swings a corner into the box but City get it clear.

Real Madrid 1-0 Man City

21:19 , Mike Jones

59 mins: Vinicius Jr weaves in from the right side of the pitch and scuffs a shot towards goal. John Stones is out of position and turns it wide of the back post because he’s unsure who’s behind him.

Madrid win three consecutive corners to really pile the pressure on City. A second goal would be a bit of a killing blow but the visitors do well to keep Madrid at bay.

Real Madrid 1-0 Man City

21:15 , Mike Jones

56 mins: Jack Grealish brings the ball down the left wing before pulling it back to Rodri in the middle. He jumps over the ball and lets it run to Kevin De Bruyne.

He shoots from range but Thibaut Courtois has it covered.

Real Madrid 1-0 Man City

21:13 , Mike Jones

53 mins: Save! The ball comes over to Bernardo Silva on the right wing who whips it in behind the Real defence with his first touch. Kevin De Bruyne gets on the end of the ball and fizzes a shot at goal only to be denied but the right hand of Thibaut Courtois.

The offside flag then goes up but the Madrid goalkeeper couldn’t take that chance and made a great save.

Real Madrid 1-0 Man City

21:11 , Mike Jones

50 mins: Chance! That’s lovely play from Real Madrid on the edge of City’s box. Vinicius Jr gives it to Benzema who flicks it over to Carvajal.

He slips the ball into the box where Benzema shoots just as John Stones gets back to make the tackle. There’s a deflection off Stones and the ball rises over the crossbar.

Real Madrid 1-0 Man City

21:08 , Mike Jones

48 mins: A short corner from Kevin De Bruyne is played to Jack Grealish who returns the ball quickly. De Bruyne then whips one into the box but sends it straight into the hands of Thibaut Courtois.

Second half: Real Madrid 1-0 Man City

21:06 , Mike Jones

There’s been no changes from either manager as Real Madrid get the game back underway. City pick up where they started the first half, a high press on the hosts sees the collect the ball inside Madrid’s half.

HT Real Madrid 1-0 Man City

21:02 , Mike Jones

The youngest South American players to score 15 goals in the Champions League:

Lionel Messi in 2009 (21 years, 288 days)

Rodrygo in 2023 (22y 99d)

Vinicius Jr in 2023 (22y 301d)

Real Madrid have a fantastic future with their front men.

HT Real Madrid 1-0 Man City

20:58 , Mike Jones

Real Madrid are on a run of three consecutive clean sheets in the Champions League, while they’ve gone 346 minutes without conceding since Mohamed Salah’s goal in the round of 16 first leg at Anfield.

HT Real Madrid 1-0 Man City

20:54 , Mike Jones


Half-time: Real Madrid 1-0 Man City

20:50 , Mike Jones

45+2 mins: Real Madrid take a slim lead into the break after Vinicius Jr’s wonderful strike. It was totally against the run of the play but Real always turn up in the Champions League.

Can City respond in the second half?

Real Madrid 1-0 Man City

20:48 , Mike Jones

45 mins: There’s going to be two minutes of added time to play at the end of the half. Jack Grealish and Dani Carvajal are getting into a bit of a tussle.

Carvajal has gotten away with a few fouls on Grealish which is winding up the City man.

Real Madrid 1-0 Man City

20:44 , Mike Jones

42 mins: Man City win a corner with a few minutes left in the half. De Bruyne sends it deep to the arriving Rodri but there’s a foul in the middle of the box and Real are awarded a free kick.

Real Madrid 1-0 Man City

20:40 , Mike Jones

39 mins: Man City need to remain calm. There’s nothing they can do about that goal, it’s a blinder from the brilliant Vinicius Jr.

Should City score they’re right back in the tie but Madrid are turning it on just before half-time. City need to hold out for the break without conceding again.

GOAL! Real Madrid 1-0 Man City (Vinicius Jr, 36’)⚽️

20:39 , Mike Jones

36 mins: Oh my word!

What a strike this is from Vinicius Jr. Eduardo Camavinga brings the ball downt he left channel and slots it inside to Vinicius as City are forced to back track.

The forward cuts into the ‘D’ on the edge of the box and unleashes a rocket of a strike that beats Ederson and finishes in the back of the net.

Real Madrid take the lead!

Real Madrid 0-0 Man City

20:36 , Mike Jones

33 mins: Eduardo Camavinga’s underlapping run sees him win a corner for Real Madrid. Toni Kroos plays it short to Luka Modric who whips in a cross with the hopes of picking out Antonio Rudiger.

Rudiger is hovering by the back post but Kyle Walker leaps above him and nods the ball clear.

Real Madrid 0-0 Man City

20:33 , Mike Jones

30 mins: A foul on Ilkay Gundogan by Antonio Rudiger stops the game for a couple of minutes. The home fans aren’t happy that the referee has stopped play but Rudiger elbowed Gundogan in the face and the German needed to be checked over.

Real Madrid 0-0 Man City

20:29 , Mike Jones

28 mins: Real Madrid have had under 30% possession over these opening minutes but on the counter-attack the hosts are electric. Rodrygo, Benzema and Vinicius are all rapid and City need to keep alert when they have the ball inside their own final third.

Real Madrid 0-0 Man City

20:28 , Mike Jones

25 mins: Chance! Vinicius Jr nicks the ball off Rodri right on the edge of Man City’s box. He drives into the area and squares a pass towards Benzema who has a certain tap in.

Ruben Dias gets ahead of the striker though and lunges towards the ball. He manages to get a foot to it first and deflects it away from Benzema.

Great defending.

Real Madrid 0-0 Man City

20:25 , Mike Jones

22 mins: The home fans whistle their displeasure at Real Madrid who are sitting back and letting Man City pass the ball around. City are creating many chances but the crowd want their side to be more aggressive.

Real Madrid 0-0 Man City

20:21 , Mike Jones

19 mins: Close! A decent run from Karim Benzema allows Rodrygo to play a pass into the City box and it almost pays off for the Real captain who darts in behind Ruben Dias.

Ederson sprints off his line and smothers the ball before Benzema gets there but it’s a sign that there’s a bit of life in Real Madrid.

Real Madrid 0-0 Man City

20:18 , Mike Jones

16 mins: Man City are really pushing for this first goal. De Bruyne forces his way up to the edge of the box and sends the ball over to Haaland on the left side of the penalty area.

Haaland shoots first time but drills it straight at Courtois.

Grealish then gets forward on the left wing and lifts the ball over to the far side of the box. Haaland is free again but this time he takes a headed chance and finds the goalkeeper.

Real Madrid 0-0 Man City

20:16 , Mike Jones

14 mins: Jack Grealish carries the ball down the left wing before slipping a pass inside to Rodri. He’s got time and space to get a shot away and hits a decent, low effort towards the near bottom corner.

Thibaut Courtois spies it early and shuffles across to push the ball behind for a corner.

Real Madrid 0-0 Man City

20:12 , Mike Jones

11 mins: City create the first real chance of the night as Real look to have reshaped their formation off the ball. The visitors have seen most of the possession and Carlo Ancelotti will want his side to get on the ball more in midfield.

Real Madrid 0-0 Man City

20:11 , Mike Jones

9 mins: Save! Kevin De Bruyne brings the ball through the middle of the pitch before slipping it over to Bernardo Silva.

Bernardo weaves into the box and lays it back to De Bruyne who belts one at goal and forces a low save out of Thibaut Courtois leaping down to his left.

Real Madrid 0-0 Man City

20:09 , Mike Jones

7 mins: Real Madrid are finding it difficult to play through Man City’s high press. Erling Haaland gets the ball inside the box but Toni Kroos nips back, wins the ball and floats a diagonal pass over to Dani Carvajal to ease the pressure.

Lovely play.

Real Madrid 0-0 Man City

20:07 , Mike Jones

5 mins: Eduardo Camavinga keeps close to Kevin De Bruyne as the Man City midfielder gets forward down the right wing. De Bruyne looks for Erling Haaland in the box and Camavinga turns the ball behind for a corner.

The set piece is floated into the middle of the penalty area but nothing comes of it for City.

Real Madrid 0-0 Man City

20:05 , Mike Jones

3 mins: Jack Grealish is hobbling around after his tackle on Rodrygo, for now though he’s okay to play on.

Erling Haaland’s first touch sees him attempt to spin away from Antonio Rudiger but the Real defender sticks to him and brings the Norwegian forward to the deck.

Kick off: Real Madrid 0-0 Man City

20:03 , Mike Jones

Manchester City get the game started and send the ball back to Ederson. He belts it long and over to the right wing where Madrid collect the ball.

It gets played across to Rodrygo who is taken out by Jack Grealish’s late tackle.

Real Madrid vs Man City

19:58 , Mike Jones

Here come the teams.

Ilkay Gundogan leads out Manchester City to a cacophony of noise inside the Bernabeu. Real Madrid will be tricky customers especially with home advantage.

It’s the Spanish champions vs the English champions.

Which way will this one go? Kick off is up next.

Real Madrid vs Man City

19:54 , Mike Jones

Erling Haaland has scored seven goals in his last three Champions League matches. Will he get on the scoresheet tonight?

Real Madrid vs Man City

19:50 , Mike Jones

Only eight clubs have made more Champions League semi-final appearances than Manchester City.

City have played in two other competition semi-finals, both in the European Cup Winners’ Cup. They beat Schalke in 1969/70 but lost to Chelsea at the same stage the following season.

Real Madrid vs Man City

19:46 , Mike Jones

Man City have won seven and drawn two of the nine games this season in which Kevin De Bruyne, Rodri, Ilkay Gundogan, Bernardo Silva and Jack Grealish have all started together.

All five start tonight.

Manchester City not motivated by revenge against Real Madrid, Pep Guardiola claims

19:42 , Mike Jones

Pep Guardiola insisted revenge was not his motivation as he prepares Manchester City for their Champions League semi-final rematch with Real Madrid.

City were beaten in heartbreaking fashion by the Spanish giants in the last four a year ago and have a chance to make amends this term.

The first leg of their latest encounter takes place at the Bernabeu on Tuesday and Guardiola is focusing on the game in hand rather than looking back 12 months.

Manchester City not motivated by revenge against Real Madrid, Pep Guardiola claims

Real Madrid vs Man City

19:38 , Mike Jones


Man City not out for revenge against Real Madrid

19:34 , Mike Jones

Pep Guardiola says it would be a “huge mistake” for Manchester City to look for “revenge” against Real Madrid. City led 5-3 on aggregate in the 90th minute of last year’s semi-final second leg, but Madrid remarkably fought back to win.

“We’re not here for revenge, we’re here for an opportunity,” said Guardiola. “What happened, happened in the past. It would be a huge mistake to think about that.

“The lesson we learn from last year is not revenge, it is learning about what happened, get a good result, perform well and give the opportunity to leave the tie open in Manchester.”

Real Madrid vs Man City

19:30 , Mike Jones

Real Madrid claimed their 14th European Cup in 2021/22.

Carlo Ancelotti’s side had finished first in Group D on 15 points, winning five of their six games, before dramatic knockout wins against Paris Saint-Germain, holders Chelsea, and Man City led to a 1-0 final victory over Liverpool.

That made Ancelotti the first coach to win four European Cups; he had been level with Bob Paisley and Zinedine Zidane on three. The Italian is also the only coach to have taken a team to five finals.

“I know Pep Guardiola - and this is why Man City will win the Champions League"

19:26 , Mike Jones

“Even for Pep Guardiola, when I look at Manchester City I can recognise more from our time together with Johan Cruyff at Barcelona than ever before.

“It might even be the winning of the Champions League. Back in 1992, when Barcelona were still waiting on their own first Champions League, Cruyff didn’t just play his formation. He came up with a “box” at the back, that had a brilliant technical player in Eusebio Sacristan at full-back. Eusebio was not a defender but his influence there completed the team, allowing such fluidity. It is similar with John Stones at City now, although he can defend very well. The system allows Guardiola’s team to play comfortably with so much space behind them, while also releasing Erling Haaland.

“The move has ensured they are now a team that has everything, combining Guardiola’s control with the individual potency of the best goalscorer in the world. It is why this is their great opportunity and the reason I think it is finally the year of City and Guardiola.

“It is also why he has been so influential in the history of football tactics, someone we all look to as coaches.”

I know Pep Guardiola - and this is why Man City will win the Champions League

Real Madrid vs Man City

19:22 , Mike Jones

Real Madrid’s strikers, Rodrygo, Karim Benzema and Vinicius Junior have 67 goals and 38 assists between them in all competitions this season.

Each of them scored across the two legs against Man City last season, will they do so again?

How will De Bruyne fare?

19:18 , Mike Jones

Kevin De Bruyne has the most assists for Manchester City in this season’s Champions League, setting up five goals in seven appearances.

Can he bring that form into this semi-final?

 (Action Images via Reuters)
(Action Images via Reuters)

Real Madrid vs Man City

19:14 , Mike Jones

Real Madrid have won four of their last five semi-final ties, having been beaten in five of the previous six.

Last season was the first time Madrid had come from behind to win a European Cup semi-final after losing the first leg, home or away.

They had been eliminated on all eight previous occasions.

Man City vs Real Madrid is the ‘real’ Champions League final

19:10 , Mike Jones

In the days before Manchester City’s most important match of the season, Pep Guardiola has been trying to strike a difficult balance. Surprisingly, his focus is not on how to play against Vinicius Junior, despite the way the forward scorched the Catalan’s side last season. Instead, Guardiola wants to make sure his players do not dwell on how last season’s semi-final ended, for fear of it inhibiting their performance, but he also doesn’t want to suppress their desire for revenge either.

With the Premier League champions in unprecedented form, some within the team want to subject Real Madrid to the heartbreak that City endured last May. Madrid, meanwhile, are intent on reasserting why they are the greatest. Carlo Ancelotti has been seeking to nurture their talent in that understated way of his.

It’s just about the only thing with this Champions League semi-final rematch that’s understated. All around the Bernabeu, there is the sense of the game building up to the be-all and end-all of the season. It is little wonder it is being described as the “real final”. After all, this is by far the more difficult side of the draw, with arguably the two best sides in Europe.

Man City vs Madrid is the ‘real’ Champions League final

Last season’s semi-final

19:06 , Mike Jones

The two teams produced a semi-final for the ages in last season’s Champions League.

A thrilling first leg at the Etihad Stadium finished 4-3 to Pep Guardiola’s side thanks to early goals from Kevin De Bruyne and Gabriel Jesus.

Karim Benzema halved the visitors’ deficit before the break but Phil Foden restored the two-goal cushion early in the second half only for Vinícius Júnior to pull one back less than two minutes later.

Bernardo Silva’s 74th-minute strike looked to secure the tie for City but Benzema chipped in from the penalty spot with eight minutes to go to leave the semi-final well poised.

In the second leg Riyad Mahrez extended City’s aggregate advantage to two goals with his 73rd minute goal and Madrid looked to be heading out.

They still trailed by two goals entering the final minute only for Rodrygo to come off the bench and score twice in 90 seconds to force extra time.

Five minutes into the first additional period, Benzema was fouled by Rúben Dias and converted the penalty himself to send Carlo Ancelotti’s Madrid through in remarkable fashion.

City’s star forward

19:01 , Mike Jones

Erling Haaland has scored 35 goals in just 27 Champions League appearances, rewriting the record books in the process.

Aged 22 and in only his fourth campaign in the competition, the Norway striker is already 19th in the list of all-time Champions League scorers and having gone above the likes of Samuel Eto’o, Antoine Griezmann, Kaká and Wayne Rooney.

He is now within sight of Edinson Cavani, Sergio Aguero and Alessandro Del Piero.

Real Madrid vs Man City

18:57 , Mike Jones

Real Madrid are in the last four for the third season in a row with this their third successive semi-final against English opponents.

City have also reached this stage for the third consecutive campaign and fourth overall, but have only gone on to the final once, in 2021.

Real Madrid vs Man City

18:53 , Mike Jones

Victory for Man City this evening would make them the first English club to beat Real Madrid away from home in the Champions League on more than one occasion.

Thibaut Courtois thinks he deserves the Ballon d’Or - stopping Erling Haaland could prove his case

18:48 , Mike Jones

It wasn’t all that long ago that Thibaut Courtois was bemoaning being only the seventh-best footballer on the planet. Not the seventh-best goalkeeper - he had top spot in that award sewn up - but seventh overall.

His case was as routine as it was sensible: we’ve won everything, I’ve played a huge part, I should be considered as one of the greatest - or, in his eyes, the greatest. Ultimately his reasons counted for plenty, just for the wrong player: teammate Karim Benzema picked up the Ballon d’Or in October.

Since then, Courtois has suffered the indignity of being No1 for perhaps the biggest underperformers on the grandest stage - Belgium at the World Cup - but with Real Madrid he continues to be in the spotlight with pivotal performances and in the running for major honours.

Courtois thinks he deserves the Ballon d’Or - so can he stop Haaland?

Real Madrid vs Man City team changes

18:44 , Mike Jones

Carlo Ancelotti makes two changes to the Real Madrid team that defeated Osasuna in the Copa del Rey final last time out. Antonio Rudiger replaces Eder Militao in defence while Luka Modric returns in place of Aurelien Tchouameni in midfield.

There are six changes to the Manchester City that beat Leeds in their last outing. At the back, Kyle Walker, John Stones and Ruben Dias join Manuel Akanji while Rodri, Bernardo Silva and Jack Grealish all come into midfield.

Nathan Ake, Aymeric Laporte, Rico Lewis, Riyad Mahrez, Julian Alvarez and Phil Foden all drop out.

Man City line-up

18:40 , Mike Jones

Man City XI: Ederson; Walker, Akanji, Dias; Stones, Rodri; Bernardo Silva, De Bruyne, Gundogan, Grealish; Haaland

Real Madrid vs Man City

18:37 , Mike Jones

For the second season in a row and the third time overall Real Madrid and Manchester City meet in the Champions League semi-finals.

The Spanish side have won both previous contests on their way to claiming the trophy, beating City 1-0 on aggregate in 2015/16 and edging through a spectacular tie 6-5 on aggregate after extra time 12 months ago.

Tonight’s encounter is set to be another fascinating game, can City get one over Madrid this time around?

‘One day we will win it'

18:32 , Mike Jones

Man City boss, Pep Guardiola, is certain that the club will win the Champions League but is wary of Real Madrid’s threat after the Spanish champions knocked them out of the tournament last seaosn.

“We arrive here with encouragement. The way we are playing is really good.” said Guardiola, “We are not here for revenge just another opportunity.

“One day we will win it. We come here this season to do it. It didn’t happen last year because we played Real in this competition.”

Ancelotti on facing Manchester City

18:27 , Mike Jones

Real Madrid coach, Carlo Ancelotti, spoke about tonight’s match saying that his team will compete with the ‘unstoppable’ Man City.

“Man City may seem unstoppable, but we will have our chances and we can compete.” said Ancelotti, “We are not thinking about stopping just one player - they are a team. We want a positive result.

“We don’t want to suffer, we want to play well. The objective is to avoid problems. It will be a demanding match.”

Real Madrid vs Man City latest odds and prediction

18:22 , Mike Jones

Latest odds for Real Madrid vs Man City:

Real Madrid to win - 9/4

Draw - 47/17

Manchester City to win - 5/4

An entertaining draw leaves things intriguingly poised ahead of the second leg. Real Madrid 2-2 Manchester City

Real Madrid vs Man City

18:17 , Mike Jones

The fans are getting ready for this huge game. The atmosphere is already building nicely in Madrid.


Pep Guardiola ready to stare down his managerial nemesis once again

18:13 , Mike Jones

As Pep Guardiola sat down to begin working on the “Johan Cruyff box” that has only further released Erling Haaland in the last few weeks, one of the Catalan’s main concerns was the equation of marrying the Norwegian’s movement with maintaining control in the Champions League. They don’t always seem to fit.

Even though he is now blessed with the best goalscorer in the world, “maintaining control in the Champions League’’ governs Guardiola’s thinking in almost everything, and has done for the last few seasons. The Catalan wouldn’t publicly admit that, of course, since he feels it feeds into an unhelpful public narrative about his “obsession” with the competition.

That is precisely how senior figures at Manchester City have privately described it, though, and some feel it goes even further. They don’t just think Guardiola wants a third Champions League. They believe he wants the record for the most in history, as should befit someone viewed as perhaps the greatest coach of all time. There is also how much emotional energy he has put in, too. You only have to watch the footage of him theatrically crumpling to the ground as Real Madrid’s Vinicius Junior tears down the wing after one minor slip in last season’s semi-final.

Pep Guardiola ready to stare down his managerial nemesis once again

Real Madrid’s starting XI

18:11 , Mike Jones

Real Madrid XI: Courtois; Carvajal, Rudiger, Alaba, Camavinga; Valverde, Modric, Kroos; Rodrygo, Benzema, Vinicius Jr

Real Madrid vs Man City

18:08 , Mike Jones

No hype needed. Who will triumph in this clash of European heavyweights?

What is the early team news?

18:05 , Mike Jones

Real Madrid are dealing with a couple of defensive issues, with Eder Militao suspended for this fixture and Ferland Mendy still battling a calf injury. Luka Modric should, however, be fit to start after overcoming his hamstring issue to feature in the Copa del Rey win on Sunday.

Kevin De Bruyne returned to the starting Manchester City side against Leeds in a timely boost for Pep Guardiola, though Nathan Ake’s second half substitution during that encounter is cause for concern. The Dutch defender’s hamstring injury could rule him out.

How to watch Real Madrid vs Man City

18:00 , Mike Jones

Real Madrid vs Manchester City is due to kick off at 8pm BST on Tuesday 9th May at the Bernabeu in Madrid.

Viewers in the United Kingdom can watch the first leg live on BT Sport 1, with coverage on the channel from 7pm BST. Subscribers can stream the game via the BT Sport app or online player

Real Madrid vs Man City

16:22 , Mike Jones

Good evening and welcome to The Independent’s coverage of tonight’s Champions League action. Real Madrid host Manchester City in the first leg of this blockbuster semi-final.

The winner of this tie will be the favourites to lift the trophy at the end of the season so there is a lot to play for over these two legs. Real Madrid are hoping to regain the title they won last year and a 15th European title will turnaround a season of underformance from Carlo Ancelotti’s men.

Manchester City are hoping to lift the Champions League trophy for the first time. Pep Guardiola has made it his mission to win Europe’s top competition since he arrived at the Etihad but hasn’t been able to get over the line. City are in thunderous form though and will prove challenging to beat for Los Blancos.

This is set to be an entertaining and well balanced encounter but who will come out on top?

We’ll have all the build-up, team news and updates throughout the night so stick with us.