Atletico edge Bayern for 2nd final in 3 years

Atletico edge Bayern for 2nd final in 3 years

Tuesday, May 3, 2016 11:59 pm

Antoine Griezmann  scores vital goal for Atletico

Antoine Griezmann scores vital goal for Atletico

Atlético Madrid reached the UEFA Champions League final for the second time in three years as Antoine Griezmann’s second-half strike proved enough to edge out Bayern München in a match in which both sides missed penalties

Trailing 1-0 from the first leg in Spain, Bayern levelled the tie through Xabi Alonso’s deflected free-kick.

Atletico keeper Jan Oblak saved Thomas Muller’s low penalty, before Antoine Griezmann coolly fired in an equaliser.

Robert Lewandowski’s header set up a tense finish, but Atletico held on after Fernando Torres missed a penalty.

Bayern, backed by a vociferous home crowd, desperately pressed for a third goal that would send them through.

However, they could not find a way past Oblak, who blocked David Alaba’s 20-yard volley in injury time.

Atletico, aiming to be crowned European champions for the first time, will meet Manchester City or Real Madrid in the final in Milan on 28 May.

City face Atletico’s neighbours at the Santiago Bernabeu on Wednesday after the teams drew 0-0 in last week’s first leg.

There was a tense atmosphere throughout the second leg in Munich, with the tie delicately balanced until the final whistle.

Bayern’s opening goal, Muller’s penalty miss and tempers flaring on the touchline – Pep Guardiola and Diego Simeone animatedly disagreeing over a decision – had already made for an entertaining first half.

Griezmann’s vital away goal and Lewandowski’s close-range finish – nodding in Arturo Vidal’s headed cross from four yards – pointed towards even more drama in the final 15 minutes.

However, the anticipated Bayern onslaught failed to materialise.

Instead, Atletico won a penalty, despite Torres being fouled outside the box, before Simeone lost his cool again when he appeared to strike a member of his own staff.

Still Bayern needed only one goal to progress – and had five minutes of added time to score it. But Atletico survived, sparking wild celebrations among Simeone and his players.

*With BBC Sport  news


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