Leipzig will now take on PSG in Lisbon in Tuesday’s semi-finals
Tyler Adams’ late deflected strike saw RB Leipzig reach their first Champions League semi-finals after a 2-1 win over Atletico Madrid in Lisbon.
The Bundesliga side – without star man Timo Werner – opened the scoring five minutes into the second half when Dani Olmo headed home Marcel Sabitzer’s cross.
However, Diego Simeone’s team drew level thanks to substitute Joao Felix, who both won and converted a penalty with 19 minutes to go.
With extra-time looming, though, Leipzig won it thanks to their own substitute as Adams saw his low drive deflect in past a helpless Jan Oblak via Stefan Savic’s outstretched leg.
Julian Nagelsmann’s side will now face Paris Saint-Germain for a place in the final on Tuesday night. Sponsored Links
Leipzig: Gulacsi (7), Upamecano (9), Klostermann (6), Halstenberg (7), Angelino (8), Sabitzer (8), Laimer (7), Kampl (7), Poulsen (6), Nkunku (6), Olmo (7)
Subs: Mukiele (6), Haidara (6), Adams (7), Schick (6)
Atletico: Oblak (7), Gimenez (7), Lodi (7), Savic (7), Trippier (6), Koke (6), Saul (6), Herrera (5), Carrasco (6), Llorente (6), Costa (5)
Subs: Felipe (6), Felix (8), Morata (6)
Man of the match: Dayot Upamecano
How Leipzig made it to their first Champions League semi
Atletico may have entered this last-eight showdown at the Estadio Jose Alvalade as favourites after eliminating holders Liverpool in the previous round, but it was their opponents who made the more assured start in the Portuguese capital, with defender Marcel Halstenberg wasting a good early opening when blasting over from close range.
Gradually, though, Atleti gained a foothold in the contest, with Yannick Carrasco – back at the club after a two-year stint in China – testing Peter Gulacsi at his near post with a fierce drive.
It was the Germans who struck first, however, after a well-worked 18-pass move just after the interval ended with Olmo getting on the end of Sabitzer’s inviting centre.
That strike – and the introduction of their £113m playmaker Felix – woke Atleti up, with the Portugal international bringing his side level after a neat one-two with Diego Costa led to a clear-cut penalty after Lukas Klostermann dived in on the 20-year-old.
Leipzig centre-back Marcel Halstenberg missed a recent friendly draw with Wolfsburg with a back injury, but was back in the squad and started.
Meanwhile, Atleti head coach Diego Simeone had a fully-fit squad from which to choose, however, Thomas Partey’s slight calf strain meant the midfielder had to settle for a place on the bench.
Referee Szymon Marciniak had no hesitation in pointing to spot, as did Felix in lashing home the resulting penalty, despite Gulacsi diving the right way.
But instead of pressing for a winner in normal time, Atletico appeared to drop off, with fatal consequences as Sabitzer’s impudent flicked pass sent Angelino clear down the left.
From the on-loan Manchester City left-back’s clever pull back, there was the New York-born Adams, unmarked on the edge of the area, to drive his side into the Champions League semi-finals, albeit with the help of a big deflection off Savic’s outstretched leg.
Record-breaking Leipzig – Opta match stats
- RB Leipzig are the first German side outside of Bayern Munich and Borussia Dortmund to reach the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League since Schalke in 2010/11.
- Atlético Madrid have failed to progress against a German side in the Champions League knockout stages for the first time ever, getting through on all previous three occasions (v Bayer Leverkusen twice and Bayern Munich once).
- Atlético Madrid have scored in each of their last 19 games in all competitions, last enjoying a longer scoring run in 2012 (24 games).
- RB Leipzig’s Dani Olmo is the first Spaniard to score against Atlético Madrid in the Champions League since Míchel netted for FK Qarabag in October 2017.
- Marcel Sabitzer registered his 26th goal involvement in all competitions for RB Leipzig this season (16 goals, 10 assists), eight more than any other player currently with the German club.
- Tyler Adams’ strike was his first ever goal for RB Leipzig in what was his 28th appearance in all competitions for the club.
- Atlético Madrid’s Kieran Trippier became just the fourth different English player to start a Champions League quarter-final with a non-English .
Man of the Match – Dayot Upamecano
The centre back was a colossus from start to finish, winning every header and tackle and keeping Diego Costa well and truly in check until the forlorn Atleti striker was replaced in the second half.
However, it was not just the France U21 international’s series of key interceptions and impressive reading of the game that caught the eye, but also his excellent distribution, allied with the occasional lung-busting run out of defence.
And on the basis of this showing, the 21-year-old will have gained a number of suitors from across the continent.
Leipzig advance to face PSG at the Estadio Jose Alvalade in Lisbon on Tuesday night.
Manchester City or Lyon vs Barcelona or Bayern Munich (August 19, Estadio da Luz)
RB Leipzig or Atletico Madrid vs PSG (August 18, Estadio Jose Alvalade)
Sunday August 23 (Estadio da Luz)