MANCHESTER, England – First Wednesday morning, Pep Guardiola staff will send a Manchester City manager to review his side’s Champions League semifinal clash against Real Madrid. At the same time, Carlo Ancelotti, his partner in the Spanish city, will get some similarities.
The dossiers will have short videos, each highlighting some of the key lessons. There will be pictures, too, of images taken of the unreliable spot in the player’s space or the detail of the field left or the darting track left unconsummated. There may be large arrows in some shades. Statistical data will be available.
Guardiola and Ancelotti will decide and comb by them, panning for every combination of skills they will find, digging deep into the details in hopes of finding some kernel, some speculation. see that will prove different when they play again next week. And when they do, they will know, deep down, that it is all, principle, in vain.
There are no hidden explanations, buried deep in the numbers or in the high resolution images, for how Manchester City managed to beat Real Madrid did not end the evening like it was lost. . Or how he accomplished with four goals and the idea that he should have half a dozen more, or how he landed a succession of knockout blows only to find his partner Fighting still standing there, smiling, complaining only a slight headache.
The raw numbers of the game are not eye-catching magic; they are just a Rorschach test. No matter how long you look at them, they will not suddenly become graphic, clear and sharp, on something that interferes with focus and interpretation.
They will not tell Guardiola how his team can perform so well, so well from every measure available and in every sense – slicker in possession and more creative and creative and young and strong – and still unable to hold Madrid by its tail.
And they can not understand how Ancelotti his team, anyway, alive and fighting in this semifinal, has a chance of more than 90 minutes in front of his own fans wind, baying and roaring, defy all human logic and lead to the Champions League final. . They will never tell him how Real Madrid manages to do this, and beyond, like drawing strength as he gets closer to the edge, constantly searching for the will and the desire to make him curious, to make it happen. for itself as magic.
Guardiola himself admitted that before the game, half of the performances, showed that there is not much point in the traditional way, the feeling of Real Madrid because of Ancelotti team is, by its nature, so chimerical. That means, most likely, based on the merits of Karim Benzema and Luka Modric, the ability of some of the best players of their generation to bend the game to their liking, but it sounds a little like it’s really. Madrid has no understanding.
He is, of course, very respectable – even at Real Madrid, the club that stood his ground for the first four years of his career – said loudly, but his experience of Etihad will have no effect on him.
Really hit in 10 minutes: two goals dropped, disagree, look immediately like a luxury of gifts but the contradictions that everyone who thinks well has left them the last four Champions League titles. David Alaba, his entire career in elite, seems to have been replaced by some callow ingénue. Toni Kroos happens to be many years old with every passing minute.
And then, by now, Ferland Mendy slung on the cross, things that came from hope more than hope, and Benzema planted his foot and changed his weight and got marks, although it is not immediately clear whether the human body and law. of physics is designed to work that way.
No problem. The city is still cutting Madrid apart on demand. Riyad Mahrez hits the post. Phil Foden has a removal from the line. A victory later, Foden converted, clipped the cross to fix the city’s cushion, to reduce tensions swaddling the Etihad.
The ball came from the foot of Fernandinho, a creaking central midfielder reborn for the evening – in extenuating nature – as a marauding fullback. Its rejuvenation lasts two minutes. Guardiola continued to celebrate as Vinicius crossed over his current opponent, ran half the length of the pitch, and lost the ball past Éderson.
City came up again, Bernardo Silva was sent off with all the skepticism and controversy and just soccer, as hard as he could, his previous flashing shot Thibaut Courtois. Benzema turned around, smiling ruefully, as if he could not believe the fact that he had to get back from his friends.
On the other hand, it can be like an acknowledgment of defeat, the ultimate acknowledgment of fate. But it’s Real Madrid, and it’s Benzema, and it’s the Champions League, so it’s clear what happened if Aymeric Laporte failed to meet the requirements – but unbelievably – hold the ball inside. his place slipped, and Benzema stood and shot one, languidly. and confident, straight to the center of ersonderson’s mission.
Guardiola sat on the ice box in the work area, his fingers against his forehead, in dangerous danger, as if trying to make some reason for it all. It’s a thankful job. This game does not make sense. His results, which meant Real Madrid left Manchester with something more than expected, with 90 minutes in front of a baying, willing Bernabeu between Ancelotti players and another Champions League final, no understanding.
No guidance, no vignette, no analysis to explain how Manchester City can beat Ancelotti to understand and still go out with a good tie too. Real Madrid have no understanding, not in the Champions League, and all you have to do is allow yourself through it.