Mbappe fires Monaco through

The New Age (Gauteng) - - SPORT -

TEENAGE sen­sa­tion Kylian Mbappe scored again to set Monaco on their way to a 3­1 sec­ond­leg vic­tory over Borus­sia Dort­mund on Wed­nes­day that al­lowed them to win their Cham­pi­ons League quar­ter­fi­nal 6­3 on ag­gre­gate.

Radamel Fal­cao also net­ted for the home side in a whirl­wind start at the Stade Louis II, and Dort­mund were left with too much to do to save the tie.

Their skip­per Marco Reus pulled a goal back early in the sec­ond half but Valere Ger­main came off the bench to put the seal on a fa­mous win for a bril­liant young Monaco side, who go through to the last four for the first time since 2004.

Mean­while, Dort­mund bow out af­ter a tie over­shad­owed by the bomb at­tack on the team’s bus last week that forced the first leg to be post­poned by a day.

The Ger­mans lost that match 3­2, their minds else­where, but their hopes of turn­ing the tie around in the sec­ond leg were not helped when their bus was held up on the way to the Stade Louis II, lead­ing to a five­minute de­lay to the kick off.

Uefa blamed heavy traf­fic for the hold up but, on their of­fi­cial Twit­ter ac­count, Dort­mund said they had been de­layed in leav­ing their ho­tel by po­lice for around 20 min­utes with­out jus­ti­fi­ca­tion.

While the ap­pear­ance of Span­ish de­fender Marc Bar­tra – who needed surgery for a bro­ken wrist suf­fered in last week’s at­tack – at the sta­dium was a boost to Dort­mund, the de­lay un­set­tled Thomas Tuchel’s side and their hopes of turn­ing the tie around were ef­fec­tively ended in a ter­ri­ble open­ing 20 min­utes.

The away de­fence backed off as Ben­jamin Mendy ad­vanced and when the full­back’s pow­er­ful left­foot strike stung the palms of goal­keeper Ro­man Burki, the 18­year­old Mbappe was on hand to con­vert the re­bound.

That strike meant Mbappe, who net­ted twice in the first leg, be­came the youngest player ever to reach five goals in the Champi­ ons League, beat­ing Real Madrid great Raul by 41 days.

Nuri Sahin cracked a free kick off a post at the other end and Monaco sur­vived that scare to in­crease their lead on 17 min­utes at the end of a counter at­tack.

The ram­pag­ing Mendy’s ini­tial cross came back to Thomas Le­mar and he held up a ball that was headed home by Fal­cao, the pro­lific Colom­bian mark­ing his 50th ap­pear­ance in Euro­pean com­pe­ti­tion with his 45th goal.

Like in the first leg, Tuchel’s de­ci­sion to start with three at the back back­fired and he changed things up be­fore the half­hour mark, bring­ing on Ous­mane Dem­bele for Erik Durm and rev­ert­ing to a four­man de­fence. – AFP


SEN­SA­TION: Monaco striker Kylian Mbappe has built a rep­u­ta­tion as one of Europe’s hottest prospects.

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