The Guardian :
While he had not been asked once in the first leg, Ederson had work to do in the second leg against Atlético de Madrid. Quiet until half-time, the Brazilian goalkeeper responded when the people of Madrid began to push and he is the great craftsman of the 0-0 synonymous with qualification for the Citizens. The 28-year-old goalkeeper made four decisive saves and in particular at the end of the match where he brilliantly repelled shots from Carrasco and Correa which could have changed this quarter-final second leg. A performance that confirms that the former Benfica is one of the best in his position.
At Chelsea, this season looks like confirmation for Reece James. An essential pawn in Thomas Tuchel’s system, the English international side (10 caps) stands out for his high volume of play and his incessant races on the right lane. Still facing Real Madrid, despite the elimination, he answered present and left only crumbs for the Madrid attackers. Offensively, he repeatedly pushed Ferland Mendy to the fault. Not for nothing if his performance was praised by Benzema at the end of the match. In central defense, he is accompanied by Raul Albiol. The experienced Villarreal defender, voted man of the match against Bayern Munich on Tuesday, was one of the key elements in his team’s qualification. At 36, he has never seemed in difficulty against the Munich offensive armada. And his experience has done Unai Emery’s training a world of good.
Alongside him, another Chelsea player: Antonio Rudiger. Before his slip which allowed Benzema to offer his team the qualifying goal, the German international was still performing an XXL performance in central defense. Always well placed, he showed great tactical discipline in this meeting and was once again imperial in the duels, leaving no chance to his opponents. And he even concluded his performance with a fine header which gave his team a two-goal lead on the hour mark. Not bad. Finally, to complete the defensive line, the left-back position is occupied by the Reds Kostas Tsimikas. Holder this Wednesday to breathe Robertson, the Greek side responded and multiplied the races on his lane and proved decisive. He offered two of his team’s three goals in this meeting.
If some still doubted it, Luka Modric has once again proven that he is still one of the best players in the world in his position. From the height of his 37 years, the Croatian midfielder is doing what he knows how to do best: dazzling the Santiago Bernabeu with his talent. He improved all the balls he had to play and was for a long time the only player to stand out when his team was taken for a ride by Chelsea. And his brilliant pass with an outside foot of which he has the secret allowed Real Madrid to snatch the extension and qualify thereafter. In this eleven type, it is accompanied by Geoffrey Kondogbia. Against Manchester City, the former AS Monaco was formidable in his offensive projection and physical impact. His high volume of play totally asphyxiated Rodri and therefore Manchester City afterwards. Even with the ball, he was of great use as he often steered the game fairly.
Finally, to complete the midfield trio, we find mason mount. For 80 minutes, the England international literally wandered around the Bernabeu. Scorer at the start of the match and decisive passer later on, he posed countless problems for the Madrid defense, in particular thanks to his position and his numerous runs between the lines. He is the player of the match having created the most chances this Tuesday evening.
This is called seizing your chance. Became a substitute this season, Roberto Firmino started his match against Benfica in the shoes of a holder since Jurgen Klopp had decided to leave Salah and Mané on the bench. And the Brazilian responded. He scored twice and therefore allowed his team to quietly ensure qualification for the semi-finals of C1. He is also the Reds player who has attempted the most shots in this meeting. He therefore deserves his place in our eleven. It will be accompanied by the inevitable Karim Benzema on the front line of the attack.
The Frenchman struck again against Chelsea and offered qualification to his team, scoring his 4th goal in this double confrontation. Abused by the defense of the Blues at first, he gained strength as the match progressed and was able to be dangerous on the only occasions he had to get his teeth into. Finally, the offensive revelation this season is called Darwin Nunez. With Benfica, the young Uruguayan striker was once again decisive. Already very good against Ajax in the previous round, he caused many problems for the Liverpool defense in the double confrontation. Scorer in the first leg, he was again this Wednesday evening and delivered a very successful performance.
We could also have mentioned: Etienne Capoue and Gerard Moreno (Villarreal), Kingsley Coman and Leon Goretzka (Bayern Munich)