It was not just that Manchester City had led by two goals with 90 minutes on the clock, a place in the Champions League final against Liverpool basically theirs – although that was plainly the greatest, deepest agony.
It was not even that this semi-final should have long since have been over. After the first leg, which City had dominated. Or before Real’s stoppage-time magic, in which the substitute, Rodrygo, cast the spells, scoring two scarcely believable goals to force extra time.
The City substitute, Jack Grealish, had seen a shot miraculously hacked off the line by Ferland Mendy in the 87th minute and then watched Thibaut Courtois stick out a toe to divert a shot from him just past the far post.
It was the way that the footballing gods, with whom Real Madrid appear to have a deal with options, tormented them. Rodrygo had almost completed a stoppage-time hat-trick at the end of normal time, stealing in to extend Ederson, when Phil Foden received a quick free-kick and saw glory beckon. His shot flew high.
Real Madrid stun City late to book final date with Liverpool https://t.co/W6apXy60s1 via @IrishTimesSport
— Irish Times Sport (@IrishTimesSport) May 4, 2022