Manchester City set up a Champions League semi-final clash with holders Real Madrid as Erling Haaland’s goal ended Bayern Munich’s hopes of a comeback.
Bayern boss Thomas Tuchel felt his side needed a miracle to go through after losing the first leg 3-0 – and they squandered plenty of opportunities to get back into the game.
Haaland made them pay as he lashed home a shot into the top corner to cap off a swift counter-attack, 15 seconds after Ederson had saved Kingsley Coman’s shot at the other end.
That was the Norwegian’s 48th goal for City this season. He could have reached that figure earlier in the game but blazed over a penalty after a Dayot Upamecano handball.
Just like in the first leg last week, Upamecano – who was also beaten easily for the 57th-minute goal – had a nightmare.
The French centre-back was shown a red card early in the game for a professional foul on Haaland, but it was overturned because the City striker was offside.
Joshua Kimmich scored an 83rd-minute penalty for Bayern after a harsh handball decision against Manuel Akanji, but the German champions were never going to find three more goals in the last seven minutes.
Boss Tuchel was also sent to the stands for two yellow cards in what was a very fractious and fiery encounter at times.
There was no doubt City deserved to progress over the two legs and their Treble dream remains alive, with the Premier League and FA Cup other trophy targets this season.
Kimmich’s spot-kick, though, ended their 10-game winning run in all competitions.
City are now unbeaten in 15 games since they lost at Tottenham on 5 February and were minutes away from an 11th win in a row. Win their final 13 matches and they will be the first English team to win the Treble since Manchester United in 1999.
That picture will become clearer over the next week as they face Sheffield United in the FA Cup semi-final on Saturday and then leaders Arsenal in the Premier League on Wednesday.
When City get going like this late in the season, though, it can be hard to stop them.
This tie was all but won last week at Etihad Stadium – and Pep Guardiola finally seems to have learned from past accusations of overthinking tactics and formations in big European games – most famously in the 2021 final defeat by Tuchel’s Chelsea.
City have found the perfect formula and named the same XI in a third consecutive Champions League game for the first time.
Keeper Ederson was there when needed and the outcome at the Allianz Arena could have been very different had he not denied Coman after 56 minutes.
John Stones immediately pumped a long ball to Haaland, who headed it down for Kevin de Bruyne. The Belgian fed Haaland to smash in goal number 48 of an incredible season.
City also kept their heads and comfortably saw the game out after Kimmich scored when Akanji was penalised by the Video Assistant Referee (VAR) for handling substitute Sadio Mane’s cross.
This is now their third Champions League semi-final in a row as they bid to finally win Europe’s biggest club competition.
In their way, though, are European royalty in the shape of Real, who beat them 6-5 on aggregate after a second-leg comeback for the ages at the same last-four stage last season.
Bayern’s decision to dismiss last season’s Bundesliga-winning boss Julian Nagelsmann and replace him with Tuchel, who was sacked by Chelsea earlier this season, raised some eyebrows.
Two wins in six games, including Champions League and German Cup exits, have left many wondering if it was the right call. It is the worst start for a Bayern boss since Soren Lerby in 1991.
Even before Tuchel’s arrival, the club lacked the aura of previous years. Instead of Robert Lewandowski, their main man up front is ex-Stoke striker Eric Maxim Choupo-Moting.
Manuel Neuer, one of the world’s top keepers of this generation, is out with a broken leg – and Mane, their big summer signing, has not impressed since joining from Liverpool. The forward was back in the squad for this one after allegedly punching Leroy Sane following Bayern’s first-leg defeat.
Upamecano was shaky at the back, having a red card rescinded, picking up a yellow for handball on the penalty and then culpable as Haaland claimed the crucial first goal.
Former City winger Sane wasted several first-half chances, including an early one that he slipped wide with just Ederson to beat. Full-back Joao Cancelo, on loan from their English opponents, was also booked for a foul on his close friend and old house-mate Bernardo Silva.
Tuchel – who saw red late on for his furious touchline reactions to refereeing decisions – can now fully concentrate on the Bundesliga, with Bayern two points above his old club Borussia Dortmund with six games to go.
Fail to win that – Bayern have won the past 10 league titles – and Tuchel’s position could be under threat.