So much for favorites. Both Spanish clubs go into the “halftime” of their respective two-legged affairs down, as Chelsea and Bayern Munich put together very impressive performances.
On Tuesday, the first leg of the semifinal battle between Munich and Real Madrid ended with a Mario Gomez strike in the 90th minute, giving Munich a 2-1 lead heading back to the Santiago Bernabeu. The win gives the German side hope that they will be able to return to the Allianz Arena as a home side in the final, which takes place in late May.
Frenchman Franck Ribery opened the scoring for Bayern in the 17th minute, giving his club a 1-0 advantage into halftime. However, Mesut Ozil equalized in the second half for Madrid, giving the side a precious away goal that could come in handy in the second leg. Despite this, Gomez’s goal to end the game will leave Los Blancos frustrated heading back to Spain, as the club will have an uphill battle over at least the next 90 minutes of the semifinal.
Chelsea shocked the world as they held Barcelona scoreless through the first 90 minutes of their semifinal at Stamford Bridge. Ivorian international Didier Drogba scored the lone goal in the match, giving the Blues a much-needed advantage. However, heading to Camp Nou and pulling off anything less than a draw will be difficult for the West London side, though it will be needed to advance to the final. The Chelsea defense will need to be in top form if the club is to pull off the upset, as Lionel Messi and company will be looking to exact a bit of revenge.
Barcelona will take on Chelsea in the second leg of their tie on April 24, while Madrid and Munich will battle the next day. The winners will face-off in Munich on May 19 for the final.