The Associated PressMONACO (AP) — Midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko’s thumping header sent Monaco through to the Champions League quarterfinals as the home side beat Manchester City 3-1 on Wednesday to progress on the away goals rule in another pulsating match between two attack-minded sides.
City fought back from 2-0 down and was momentarily in control after midfielder Leroy Sane’s 71st-minute goal. But six minutes later Bakayoko rose imperiously to meet Thomas Lemar’s curling free kick and restore the two-goal margin Monaco needed as the contest finished 6-6 on aggregate.
“If you analyze the two games, Monaco deserved to go through. I think over the two games we played better than City,” Monaco coach Leonardo Jardim said. “Even in the first leg, City had a bit of luck.”
City coach Pep Guardiola lamented the fact that his side had failed to compete in the first half.
“At this level, you have to play more than 45 minutes. We only played for 45 minutes,” Guardiola said.
“The gap between the first and the second halves is there. You ask me why? It’s the same question I am asking myself.”
Trailing 5-3 from the first leg of their Round of 16 match, Monaco made the perfect start. Confirming his reputation as a rising star of European football, 18-year-old forward Kylian Mbappe scored from close range in the eighth minute for his 11th goal in 11 games.
Brazilian midfielder Fabinho made it 2-0 in the 29th with a crisp shot from near the penalty spot after excellent work by left back Benjamin Mendy.
Three weeks ago, City had rallied from 3-2 down with three goals in the last 20 minutes and Pep Guardiola’s side needed another comeback on the French Riviera.
Atletico advances on aggregate
In the night’s other match, Atletico Madrid drew 0-0 at home to Bayer Leverkusen to advance 4-2 on aggregate.
The other teams in Friday’s draw are holders Real Madrid, Barcelona, Juventus, Bayern Munich, Borussia Dortmund and Leicester.
Radamel Falcao, who scored twice for Monaco in the first leg, failed a late fitness test on a hip injury.
He was hardly needed on Wednesday.