Champions LeagueFootball

Champions League wrap: Mendy’s late curler gives Real Madrid win over Atalanta

Ferland Mendy

Ferland Mendy scored late to give Real Madrid a 1-0 win over 10-man Atalanta in the first leg of their Champions League round of 16 matchup.

The Italian hosts went down a player in the 17th minute of Wednesday’s match when Remo Freuler was called for fouling Mendy outside of the penalty box.

Atalanta, usually known for their high-scoring matches, were able to stifle Real’s attack for the most of the match after Freuler’s exit.

However, they caught an unlucky break in the 86th minute when Luka Modric found Mendy for a superb curling effort into the bottom corner from outside the box.

The second leg will take place in three weeks in Madrid.

In the other Champions League tie of the night, Manchester City outclassed their opponent.

The English side extended their winning run in all competitions to 19 games as they comfortably beat Borussia Monchengladbach 2-0 in the Champions League round of 16 first leg.

Two near-identical goals, one scored by Bernardo Silva and the other assisted by him, put Pep Guardiola’s side within touching distance of the quarterfinals.

Bernardo put City in front on 29 minutes, losing his marker at the back post to head home a pinpoint Joao Cancelo cross.

The same move resulted in Bernardo heading back across goal for Gabriel Jesus to tap in on 65 minutes and put City in a commanding position with two away goals.

The tie took place at the Puskas Arena in Budapest, Hungary, rather than in Monchengladbach, due to German authorities putting travel restrictions on the UK amid the spread of a COVID-19 variant.

But City, who left John Stones, Sergio Aguero, Kevin de Bruyne and Riyad Mahrez out of the starting XI, were dominant and outclassed their Bundesliga opponents.

City are 10 points clear of second place in the Premier League, in the Carabao Cup final and in the quarterfinals of the FA Cup as they chase an unprecedented quadruple.

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