Atletico Madrid reached the Champions League final for the second time in three seasons after defeating Bayern Munich on goal difference on Tuesday.

 

The Rojiblancos went into the game at the Allianz Arena with a 1-0 lead from their home leg, looking to defend their slender lead for 90 minutes.

However, Bayern broke the deadlock in the 31st minute as Xabi Alonso scored from a close-range free kick. Replays showed that Alonso managed to nutmeg Atletico defender Jose Gimenez before scoring. Here’s a video of the deflected goal.

In the 33rd minute, Turkish referee Cuneyt Cakir handed the Bavarians a great opportunity to take the lead in the tie as he pointed to the spot following Gimenez’s foul on Javi Martinez. Thomas Muller stepped up to take the penalty, which was expertly saved by Jan Oblak.

The match looked to be heading into extra time at one point, but Atletico manager Diego Simeone made a shrewd change that turned the game on its head. He brought on winger Yannick Ferreira Carrasco in place of midfielder Augusto Fernandez. This essentially gave Koke a more centralised role and allowed him to control the Atletico counter-attacks.

The tactic worked perfectly, as Koke released Griezmann with an aerial through ball during one of these counters. Griezmann expertly played a 1-2 with striker Fernando Torres and went on to score the goal that gave Atleti an aggregate lead. However, there was  a hint of offside in this move when Torres played Griezmann through.

The goal meant that Bayern needed to score two goals to progress. The Bavarians are not a team to back down and instantly launched their attacks to get the required goals. They managed to get one back when Jerome Boateng headed a David Alaba cross into Robert Lewandowski’s path for the Polish striker to head in from close range.

Atletico Madrid had the chance to end the tie when Javi Martinez brought Fernando Torres down near the penalty area. Replays suggested that the foul had happened outside the box, but a penalty was awarded to the away side. Manuel Neuer was equal to the task, however, and the Spanish side were forced to hang on till the full time whistle.

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