Perhaps two of the world's most dominant teams have each secured one foot into the UEFA Champions League final, with Manchester United and FC Barcelona each securing 2 - 0 wins over FC Schalke 04 and Real Madrid respectively.
The first of the ties saw the Red Devils travel to Gelsenkirchen in Germany to face this season's Champions League surprise packet Schalke. In a very entertaining first half which saw Manchester United squander a number of chances to take the lead, the heroics of Schalke keeper and suppossed United target Manuel Neuer was the main talking point as the 23 year old made sure nothing went past his goal.
In the 66th minute the deadlock was finally broken as Wayne Rooney slipped through a nice through ball to veteran Ryan Giggs who slotted it home. Moments later, Rooney added himself to the scoresheet thanks to a Hernandez pass making the score 2 - 0.
Watch extended highlights of the Red Devils win here:
The second tie saw the third installment of the El Classico, as Real Madrid entertained heated rivals FC Barcelona. In typical Barcelona fashion, the first half possesion was mostly dominated by the Catalan men, forcing Real Madrid keeper Iker Casillas to pull off a few saves from shots thanks to Xavi and David Villa.
An on-field scuffle between the two team soon ensured and eventually Real Madrid were forced to play the game with ten men as Pepe was given his marching orders (and oddly enough, Jose Pinto the Barcelona second keeper was also given a red card...)
With under 15 minutes left, Messi breached the Madrid defense and delivered a sublime hammer-blow slotting his 51st goal of the season, before skimming past three Madrid defenders to add to the scoreline in the 87th minute with a cool Messi style finish. Watch highlights of the game here:
szólj hozzá: RM 0-2 BAR - Highlights
The two wins see Manchester United and FC Barcelona with each one foot in Wembley in May, leaving both FC Schalke 04 and Real Madrid with a hugs mountain to climb.
By Marcel Abboud