Bayern beats Arsenal to reach Champions League semifinal

Berlin: Joshua Kimmich’s sole goal helped Bayern Munich progress into the UEFA Champions League last four after beating Arsenal 1-0 (3-2 on aggregate) in the second leg.

The German giants caught a bright start in front of the home crowd as Harry Kane’s volley went just wide in the opening stages before Noussair Mazraoui’a deflected shot missed the target with 23 minutes gone.

Arsenal’s goalkeeper David Raya was also busy as he had to palm away Jamal Musiala’s dangerous effort moments later.

The Gunners came also close and tested goalkeeper Manuel Neuer but neither Martin Odegaard nor Kai Havertz was able to score the opener from a promising position.

Bayern started powerful into the second half and rattled the woodwork in quick succession. Leon Goretzka’s header dropped off the crossbar allowing Raphael Guerreiro to hit the outside of the left post with the subsequent rebound.

The Gunners, meanwhile, lacked penetration and couldn’t pose a threat to the host’s well-organised defence, reports Xinhua.

The Bavarians eventually broke the deadlock and shocked the visitors at the hour mark when Guerreiro’s whipped cross into the box found Germany international Kimmich, whose diving header caught Raya flatfooted.

Tuchel’s men gained momentum but Leroy Sane and Kimmich got their chances denied later.

Arsenal remained uninspired as Bayern’s defense was able to keep the Gunners at bay.

The visitor’s best chance in the second half came from Odegaard, who rattled the side netting.

Bayern protected its narrow lead to the final whistle and snatched the first semifinal ticket since 2020, the same year when it lifted the Champions League trophy. The German record champion join Bundesliga rival Borussia Dortmund in the last four and clash with Real Madrid.

“It is great to advance into the next round. Both sides took no risks in the first half, but we gained the upper hand after the half-time. We showed will and took the win,” said Bayern coach Thomas Tuchel.

“The first half was nervous, but we played very well in the second half and should have added more goals to our lead. The bottom line is that we deservedly progressed into the next round,” commented Kimmich.

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