Rodri scored a sensational long-range winner to help Man City produce one of the narrow football scores of the weekend in the Champions League final. Midway through the second half, Rodri’s sidefooted goal breached Inter’s defense, and despite Federico Dimarco’s header hitting the crossbar and Ederson’s incredible save on Romelu Lukaku, City held on to create history in the Ataturk Olympic Stadium. With this triumph, they matched their city rivals’ feat from 1999 after defeating Arsenal to win the Premier League trophy and beating Manchester United to win the FA Cup at Wembley. After the game, Pep Guardiola started crying. The Catalan coach had won everything at City, but this was the moment they had all been waiting for—the first time they had ever been crowned European champions.
It was cramped and stressful. Of course, there is a risk, but there is also difficulty. When Kevin De Bruyne left the game injured in the first half of the Champions League final for the second time in three seasons and with the outcome still in doubt, City’s mission became more challenging. Early on, Ederson appeared tense and had brief instances of sloppiness that spoke to the magnitude of the situation. Rodri kept losing his passes. Once, Erling Haaland made a break for it, but his shot was stopped. It was City’s finest opportunity in the first half against a well-prepared Inter.
After Edin Dzeko was replaced by Lukaku, the task did not become any simpler. In fact, Inter may have taken the lead if Ederson had not narrowly stopped Lautaro Martinez after Manuel Akanji had foolishly let the ball go through. In desperation, Guardiola was on his knees. Joy soon followed. Bernardo Silva received a ball from Akanji, and Rodri was about to attack when his cutback was diverted into his path. To conclude the scoreless tie, the midfielder controlled his shot and bent it past two Inter players and into the far corner of the goal.
Rodri had been seated for the 2021 Champions League championship match vs Chelsea. No, not now. His goal will be among City’s most significant in the team’s history, rivaling Sergio Aguero’s title-winning shot from 11 years prior in significance. However, it wasn’t the end. Taking advantage of confusion inside the City box, Dimarco’s looping header past Ederson but rebounded against the crossbar. The second opportunity appeared to be simpler, but Dimarco’s header this time struck Lukaku in the legs. a successful getaway.
With only a few minutes left, Lukaku had a better opportunity. The attacker only needed to outmuscle Ederson from close range after Robin Gosens placed the ball in the center. His header was solid, but it missed the corner because of an incredible save by the custodian. It is a save that will be remembered for a long time. A memorable evening that will be remembered for years. The European champions are Manchester City. They own the treble.
“I didn’t care that I was terrible,” Jack Grealish said. “It is really exceptional to achieve the Triple with this team of players. You dedicate your entire life to achieving this. I’m overjoyed.”
“I told myself that I had to go over the circumstance and the way of thinking. I scored a fantastic goal,” goalscorer Rodri said. “This is how finals are. You can’t expect us to play the way we usually do. However, the boys continued to compete to the very end. We competed in a wild way. It was challenging. Whoa, what a squad. It was remarkable how they counterattacked and defended.”
“Our performance in the opening period of the game was subpar,” captain Ilkay Gundogan said. “We were a little hesitant. We knew we needed to perform better in the second half, despite the fact that we had a few decent chances. We did that, but it was still probably a 50/50 game. The difference was one goal, as it frequently is in championship games. We are quite grateful that it is ours.”
“We were extremely tense during the first half. John Stones, the free guy, was nowhere to be found. But the key was to exercise patience. We were behind 1-0 when halftime rolled around [in the 2021 Champions League final in Porto], but things are even now. We made some adjustments, but this competition requires luck,” Manchester City head coach Pep Guardiola said. “Ederson, if they mishit it in the end, they might tie, and then Phil [Foden] might score the second goal. This contest is decided by a coin toss. We were there, though. This season, I believe it was preordained in the stars that we would succeed, and we did.”
“In the box, I believe we played a little bit better defense. We have four legitimate defenders in the center of the pitch. We feel like we are solid even when we make blunders,” he added. It has brought the treble. “Gaining the Premier League, the FA Cup, and now this is where the momentum ended. Because winning this contest and the treble is so hard, today’s events are not particularly significant. To simply carry it out.”
After Aston Villa, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester United, and Nottingham Forest, Manchester City is the sixth English team to win the European Cup, twice as many as any other country. City follows Manchester United in 1999 as the only other English team to win the triple crown. Pep Guardiola, their manager, has now accomplished the feat twice with two separate teams, making him the only manager in history to do so. More 1-0 victories have been recorded in the previous four Champions League finals than in the first 27 since the competition’s rebranding in 1992.
In the club’s 413th game under Pep Guardiola’s leadership, City won for the 300th time in all competitions. Prior to Pep Guardiola joining the club, no English top-flight team had ever ended a season with more goals scored than goals conceded. Manchester City have done this in three of the previous five seasons. Erling Haaland finished the Champions League season with 12 goals, however, he failed to score in any of his last three outings, which was the longest stretch of games in the tournament during which he went without scoring.
For more football scores, click here