Erling Haaland confirmed Manchester City will face Real Madrid in the Champions League semi final, whilst a Milan derby completes the final four.
Whilst drama remained in Tuesday’s quarter final ties in the Champions League, few expected any sort of comebacks when Wednesday night’s second legs began.
City had battered Bayern Munich in the first leg, although not as much as Bayern’s own players had battered each other, winning 3-0 at the Etihad Stadium.
Inter Milan had also put down a marker, defeating Benfica relatively easily, with a 2-0 in Portugal, making an all Italian semi-final all but a certainty.
Bayern and Benfica both knew they needed strong starts in order to have any chance of overturning their deficits, and the Bundesliga leaders certainly did that.
Leroy Sane, fresh from being smacked by Sadio Mane, had their best chance, but they couldn’t break through against City, despite being on top.
So when Erling Haaland stepped up for a penalty, after Dayot Upamecano was harshly adjudged to have handled the ball in the box, the game looked all over for Thomas Tuchel’s side.
Surprisingly though, the Norwegian blazed his attempt well over the bar, leaving the German’s to live for another day, much to the relief of Upamecano, who’d already been having a terrible time in the tie.
Inter made no such mess of extending their lead as Nicolo Barella, fresh from scoring in the first leg, scored with a lovely finish to make it 3-0 on aggregate.
Fredrik Aursnes did head home for Benfica to reduce their arrears before half time, but, with no away goal rule these days, Simeone Inzaghi’s side remained favourites to go through.
Bayern had another good chance early in the second half but, when it went begging, City zipped up the other end of the pitch and Haaland, after another error from Upamecano, made up for his penalty miss.
Lautaro Martinez and Joaquin Correa both scored in Italy to give the San Siro side a 3-1 lead on the night, and 5-1 on aggregate.
Bayern thought they had one back with 15 minutes left on the clock, but it was quickly ruled off for offside, but they did manage to get a goal.
Another controversial penalty, this time a handball from Manuel Akanji, saw Joshua Kimmich step up and put his spot kick down the middle.
Benfica also pulled one back, with Antonio Silva scoring late on, but it was far too little and far too late for both of the losing sides.
With Real Madrid knocking out Chelsea, and AC Milan upsetting Napoli, in the other games, it sets up two huge semi finals to come next month.
Whoever wins between Real and City will be undoubted favourites to go on and win the title, with City looking to win it for the first time and potentially win the Treble.
On the other side of the draw, the San Siro will play host to both legs, as the Milan sides take part in a derby, for a place in the final.
The last time that happened was in 2003, whilst both sides also met in the quarter finals in 2005, with the Rossoneri coming out on top in both.