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在线翻译:
szdaily -> Sports
Real holds off Atletico to enter final
    2017-May-12  08:53    Shenzhen Daily

ATLETICO Madrid gave its passionate fans hope early on, but in the end it was city rival Real Madrid that celebrated a return to the Champions League final.

Madrid withstood an early onslaught by Atletico to reach a third Champions League final in four years despite a 2-1 loss Wednesday.

Atletico, which trailed 3-0 after the first leg, scored twice in the first 16 minutes at the

Vicente Calderon Stadium to move within a goal of sending the semifinal, second-leg into extra time. But Isco netted a crucial away goal for Madrid before halftime to secure a 4-2 victory on aggregate and a spot in the final against Juventus on June 3 in Cardiff.

“We knew we were going to suffer, but we are extremely happy to have made it to the final,” Madrid coach Zinedine Zidane said. “It’s been a very long road and it hasn’t been easy. And to do it for the second year in a row, we need to congratulate everyone in this club.”

Atletico ends its Champions League campaign without a shot at the title and with its fourth straight elimination to its powerful Spanish rival. Madrid defeated Atletico in the final last year and in 2014, and also eliminated the crosstown opponent in the quarterfinals in 2015.

“I’m happy and proud to have shown what we are all about,” Atletico coach Diego Simeone said. “When we said we believed in a comeback, a lot of people didn’t take it seriously. The first 30, 35 minutes we played will remain in the fans’ memory for a long time. But we were playing against a great rival and they took advantage of our mistake in defense.”

Madrid will try to become the first team to win back-to-back titles since the competition’s new format was created in 1992. It will be the first team to have a chance to defend its title since Manchester United made it to consecutive finals in 2008-09.

Atletico kept its hopes alive Wednesday by scoring two early goals to ignite the crowd at the packed Calderon.

Saul Niguez netted the first goal with a header off a corner in the 12th minute, and Antoine Griezmann added to the lead four minutes later by converting a penalty after Fernando Torres was tripped by defender Raphael Varane. Griezmann, who had missed a penalty in last year’s final against Madrid, slipped slightly just as he was taking the shot. Madrid goalkeeper Keylor Navas got his glove to the ball, but couldn’t keep it out.

“They started strongly but eventually we were able to find our game,” Zidane said. “In the second half, we were much better.”

The early goals gave Atletico real hope of causing an upset, but Simeone’s team was unable to keep pressuring as it did in the opening minutes.

The match was evenly-balanced when Karim Benzema came up with a spectacular move to set up Isco’s goal.

The French striker was surrounded by three Atletico defenders at the byline, but somehow found a way past all of them with a pair of quick touches. He sped into the area and sent a backward pass to Toni Kroos, whose shot was parried by goalkeeper Jan Oblak. But Isco pounced on the rebound to score from close range.

(SD-Agencies)

 

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