Rodri, a historic goal for City
Long neutralized by Inter in this closed final, City finally found the fault in the heart of the second half. Rodri was responsible for concluding one of the few good collective movements of the champion of England. Following a Bernardo Silva centre countered by Acerbi, the midfielder applied himself to curl up a beautiful strike, which left Onana no chance after bypassing two defenders. Crazy with joy in front of the corner occupied by the Mancunian fans, the 26-year-old player concluded this Saturday an exceptional season and occupies a primordial part in this long-awaited coronation.
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Often considered City's weak link, Ederson started this final badly, missing several kicks in the first half. But the Brazilian goalkeeper made up for it after the break. Saved by his bar on a Dimarco header, he came out the big game at the end of the match to repel the heads of Lukaku (88th) and Gosens (90th+5). Two rescues oh so important for Citizens who have never been able to control the debates.
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Dias at the level
Despite the victory, many Citizens did not display their usual level during this final. Ruben Dias has been one of the few to have a big game. Solid in duels and valuable in the air, the Portuguese defender has held his rank as boss of the Mancunian defense. His serenity impressed. Especially since at his side, Aké and especially Akanji have repeatedly shown a real feverishness.
Lukaku in a bad night
As often this season, Romelu Lukaku was used as a wild card during this final. The Belgian striker, who came on in place of a Dzeko quickly riddled with cramps (55th), could have changed the course of the match. Initially unfortunate by unintentionally countering a header from Dimarco (72nd), he then created a huge opportunity, but his header landed directly on Ederson (88th). Always clumsy in the stride, on a strike too cross (89th), the former Chelsea player can have big regrets.
Little seen Calhanoglu
Beaten by the smallest of margins, Inter was able to stand up to City in this long-closed final. Solid, the Lombard club has long competed in midfield, despite the disappointing performance of Hakan Çalhanoglu. Associated with Barella and Brozovic, the Turkish international has not had the same performance as his teammates. Discreet in recovery, and imprecise on some transmissions while interesting counters were emerging. Logically replaced at the end of the match, while the Lombards pushed to snatch the equalization.
See alsoChampions League: Cursed, De Bruyne out on injury in final (video)
De Bryune, damned finals
As in 2021 against Chelsea, Kevin De Bruyne had to leave his teammates prematurely in this final. This time due to a muscle injury to the thigh, contracted at the half hour of play. After receiving the care of the medical staff, the Belgian, author of a very disappointing performance so far, tried to resume the game, but he finally resolved to leave the field after a final acceleration. Disappointed and then tense on the bench, the 31-year-old showed, this time, a broad smile after the final whistle.