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ZODIAC

Found 24 results

  1. Princess Charlene has returned to Monaco after a prolonged illness left her separated from her family for a year
  2. Princess Charlene has been receiving specialised treatment for 'extreme fatigue' at a confidential location
  3. Lando Norris is about to embark on his second year in Formula One after a successful rookie campaign
  4. An outrageous strike by Radamel Falcao was the highlight as a much-changed Monaco side eased to a 2-0 win over Caen to reach the quarter-finals of France's League Cup on Tuesday. Monaco were leading through Guido Carrillo's first-half effort when Falcao -- who had come off the bench -- took a touch just inside the Caen half on the edge of the centre circle. The Colombian then turned and smashed a shot that flew over the Caen goalkeeper Brice Samba and in. It was his 18th goal of the season. The principality side are currently third in Ligue 1, nine points behind leaders Paris Saint-Germain, and were knocked out of the Champions League after finishing bottom of their group. That means the domestic cup competitions take on added importance for Monaco, who lost to PSG in the League Cup final last season. PSG, who have won the competition in each of the last four seasons, go to Strasbourg in the last 16 on Wednesday and will be without Neymar after the Brazilian was allowed to return to his home country for personal reasons.
  5. Vincent Aboubakar struck two first-half goals to spearhead Porto?s emphatic 5-2 win over Monaco at the Dragao Stadium on Wednesday and seal their place in the knockout stages of the Champions League. The prolific Cameroonian striker took his season?s tally in all competitions to 17 in a one-sided game in which both teams were reduced to 10 men after Porto?s Felipe and Monaco?s Rachid Ghezzal were sent off for an undignified 38th-minute scuffle. Knowing a win would guarantee them second place in Group G, Porto?s nerves were quickly settled when Aboubakar latched on to Yacine Brahimi?s through ball after nine minutes. The powerful striker was in magnificent form, pouncing again in the 33rd minute when he cut in from the left edge of the box and shot beneath Diego Benaglio for his fifth goal of the Champions League campaign. Monaco, who had lost the 2004 final to the same Portuguese opponents, were reminded of that 3-0 defeat when Aboubakar turned provider, playing in Brahimi for a third just before halftime. Monaco captain Kamil Glik pulled one back with a 61st-minute penalty, given harshly for a handball from Ivan Marcano, but Porto?s Brazilian fullback Alex Telles thundered home a 25-metre shot four minutes later. Radamel Falcao nodded in a 78th-minute consolation against his old club before Tiquinho Soares struck again with another header for the home side with just two minutes remaining. The victory took Porto to 10 points behind group winners Besiktas, who moved on to 14 after their 2-1 win at RB Leipzig ensured the German newcomers missed out in third place on seven points. For Monaco, though, the conclusive defeat only demonstrated how far they have fallen since their exciting young side was broken up after reaching the semi-finals last season. For the prolific Falcao, still Monaco?s brightest spark in a dismal season, it was a bittersweet return to the Dragao, where he won six trophies with Porto. ?For me, it was a huge pleasure to come here and play again. It?s like my home and I won a lot of trophies here,? the Colombian told UEFA.com. ?Now we have to focus on the league and the two domestic cups. It?s sad not to be continuing in the Champions League but that?s football. ?Our team changed a lot in the summer and we need time to get stronger. We are capable of finishing second in the league in order to return to this competition.?
  6. Monaco vice-president Vadim Vasilyev has questioned Kylain Mbappe's loan to Paris Saint-Germain in a move he calls "the most successful in world football". The 18-year-old striker moved to PSG last Thursday in a season-long loan deal with a 180 million euro buy-out clause attached, making him the second most expensive player of all time behind new teammate Neymar.in a season-long loan deal with a 180 million euro buy-out clause attached, making him the second most expensive player of all time behind new teammate Neymar. "We (Monaco) could not understand to the very end whether this deal was really possible as UEFA had questions to PSG about their compliance with financial fair-play," Vasilyev told Russian news agency TASS. "It was a very tough deal," he added. "Initially, we did not want the footballer to strengthen our opponents. "But I think this deal appears to be the most successful one in the world of football." PSG secured Mbappe less than a month after signing Brazilian superstar Neymar from Barcelona in a world record 222 million euro ($264 million) deal. Last week Europe's football ruling body UEFA opened a "formal investigation" into PSG's dealings over the transfer window. UEFA said it would look at whether PSG had violated the financial fair play regulations "in light of its recent transfer activity". UEFA president Alexsander Ceferin insisted on Monday that "Nobody is above the law". The Slovenian, speaking to the European Clubs Association in Geneva, added: "UEFA is at your side to ensure that the participants in our competitions are all treated equally. "Financial fair play is a tremendous success because it has enabled clubs to reduce their losses drastically and adopt an economic model that is viable for the long term. "Nevertheless, UEFA's credibility and that of football rests on us ensuring that the rules that are in force are respected."rests on us ensuring that the rules that are in force are respected."
  7. French teen sensation Kylian Mbappe joined Paris Saint-Germain from Monaco on a season-long loan Thursday, just hours before the transfer deadline in a deal that makes him the second most expensive footballer in history. "Paris Saint-Germain is delighted to announce the immediate arrival of Kylian Mbappe," the club wrote on its website. "The loan agreement also includes an option to buy which, when exercised, will bind the player to Paris Saint-Germain until June 30, 2022." According to media reports, the overall transfer fee could rise to 180 million euros ($215 million) including add-ons, which would make Mbappe, 18, the second most valuable player ever behind his new team-mate Neymar. "It is with great joy and pride that I join Paris Saint-Germain," said Mbappe. "For any young person from the Paris region, it is often a dream to wear the red and blue jersey and experience the unique atmosphere of the Parc des Princes. "I really wanted to be a part of the club?s project, which is one of the most ambitious in Europe. "Alongside my new team-mates, I intend to continue my progression while helping the team achieve the very big objectives it has set itself." Mbappe burst onto the scene in the second half of last season and scored 15 goals in 29 appearances in Monaco's run to the French title. He netted 26 times in 44 matches in all competitions. Brought up in the northern suburbs of Paris, Mbappe was compared to a young Thierry Henry as he first broke into the Monaco side in December 2015, just before his 17th birthday. He has won four caps for France. "It was essential for French football that we keep and help develop such a great talent in our championship," said PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi. "Among players of his age, he is without doubt the most promising in the world." Also targeted by Real Madrid this summer, Mbappe's move to PSG will leave many wondering how the Qatar-owned club can avoid sanctions from European football's governing body considering the investment already made on Neymar. The French club shattered the previous global transfer record earlier in August when they splashed out a staggering 222 million euros to prise the Brazilian superstar away from Barcelona. FFP rules currently stipulate that clubs cannot post losses of more than 30 million euros over the three-year period to 2018. Among the sanctions risked by PSG if they are found to have broken those rules is a ban from the Champions League. France play a World Cup qualifier against the Netherlands at the Stade de France later on Thursday, although Mbappe was only named among the substitutes by Didier Deschamps. After being left out of the Monaco squad last week, Mbappe was an unused substitute for last Sunday's game against Marseille as the reigning French champions won 6-1.
  8. Kylian Mbappe was left on the bench as Radamel Falcao scored twice in Monaco's 6-1 trouncing of Marseille in Ligue 1 on Sunday. Four of the goals came in the first half at the Stade Louis II, with captain Falcao's brace falling in between strikes from Kamil Glik and Adama Diakhaby. Djibril Sidibe and Fabinho, with a penalty, completed the rout after the break. The reigning champions have won four out of four games to start the season and sit second on goal difference behind leaders Paris Saint-Germain, the only other team with a perfect record at the end of August. Monaco's record-breaking run of victories in France's top flight now stretches to 16, and they have scored 18 goals in their last four games against Marseille, winning the lot. Marseille, for whom Remy Cabella grabbed a consolation, had not lost in 14 Ligue 1 matches but they were outclassed by a Monaco side clearly not perturbed by the speculation surrounding Mbappe's future. The 18-year-old French international striker, one of the stars of last season's run to the title, is on the brink of completing a much talked about move to PSG that would end a summer-long transfer saga. A deal for Mbappe could be worth as much as 180 million euros ($215 million), making him the second most expensive player in football history behind Neymar, who joined PSG from Barcelona for 222 million euros earlier this month. The principality club have also lost Tiemoue Bakayoko, Bernardo Silva, Benjamin Mendy and Valere Germain since their stunning title win, but they look to be in rude health nevertheless. Polish centre-back Glik turned in a Thomas Lemar free-kick for the second-minute opener, with Steve Mandanda turning a Diakhaby effort onto the post moments later. Monaco were 2-0 up in the 20th minute as Falcao converted a penalty awarded for a Jordan Amavi foul on Fabinho, another player closely linked with a move to PSG. Colombian star Falcao then headed in to make it 3-0 after Diakhaby had helped on a free-kick in the 34th minute, and it was four on the stroke of half-time as superb play by Rony Lopes left Diakhaby with a tap-in for his first goal since signing from Rennes. Unhappy Marseille fans tried to invade the pitch at the Stade Louis II after that goal, and the misery continued after the break for them. Sidibe stooped to head in the fifth midway through the second half after Glik had headed against the post from a Joao Moutinho ball in, before Cabella converted a driven ball across goal by Florian Thauvin to pull one back. But it ended in a tennis score as Hiroki Sakai's foul on Jorge allowed Fabinho to smash in another penalty and make it 6-1. PSG eased to a 3-0 win over third-placed Saint-Etienne on Friday, with Edinson Cavani scoring twice either side of a Thiago Motta goal at the Parc des Princes. Earlier on Sunday, Marcelo Bielsa's Lille stopped the rot after back-to-back defeats as Nicolas de Preville's superb strike gave them a 1-1 draw at Angers.
  9. Neymar lived up to expectations as he showed his class on his Ligue 1 debut on Sunday, scoring one and setting up another goal in Paris St Germain's 3-0 win at En Avant Guingamp. The Brazilian, who joined PSG for a record-shattering 222 million euros (202 million pounds) from Barcelona this month, found Edinson Cavani with a perfectly-timed, defence-splitting pass after the break and the Uruguay striker added to Jordan Ikoko's own goal. Cavani returned the favour with a perfect cut back and Neymar poked the ball home eight minutes from time. The record attendance at the tiny Roudourou stadium was broken as 18,378 fans attended the much-anticipated debut of the Brazil forward. Neymar regularly made himself available and his neat passing in small spaces gave PSG several chances, his relationship with Cavani looking particularly promising. In the 35th minute, he scooped a delicate cross above the defence but Marquinhos's header crashed onto the bar. Karl-Johan Johnsson then tipped Cavani's free kick over his bar as Guingamp held firm. Neymar continued to treat the crowd to some delicate turns, but it was a rookie mistake that put the visitors ahead seven minutes into the second half, when Ikoko's pass back to his keeper ended up in the net. The Brazilian was more decisive on the next goal as he set up Cavani, the Uruguayan scoring with a low shot after he collected his new team mate's long pass in the 62nd minute. Twenty minutes later, Neymar was at the receiving end of Cavani's work to wrap a near-perfect debut. PSG are second on six points, behind Olympique Lyonnais on goals scored with Monaco, who thrashed Dijon 4-1 away earlier on Sunday, in third place also on six points. Despite Monaco fans' concerns that French prodigy Kylian Mbappe might be leaving, they know they can still trust Radamel Falcao after the Colombian striker hit a treble. France international Mbappe was left on the bench amid speculation that he wants to join PSG but he was not needed as Monaco equalled the record of 14 consecutive wins in the French league. Falcao scored twice before the break and once after to take his tally to four goals in two games while Jemerson netted another. Earlier, Lille were beaten 3-0 at promoted RC Strasbourg, conceding all three goals after striker Nicolas de Preville took over as goalkeeper following the sending off of Mike Maignan in the 63rd minute.
  10. AS Monaco are hopeful that sought-after striker Kylian Mbappe will sign a new contract despite being a target for some of Europe's richest clubs, according to the club's vice president. The 18-year-old, valued at a colossal 180 million euros by the Ligue 1 champions, is reportedly a target for Spanish giants Real Madrid and Premier League club Manchester City. "We are holding talks on an extension with Kylian. I hope that we will get there," Vadim Vasilyev said on Monaco's Twitter page on Wednesday. Vasilyev said there had been offers, though. "We've had some major offers for Mbappe. He's the biggest hope in world football." Last week Monaco said a number of "important" European clubs had approached Mbappe without their permission, breaking French league rules and FIFA statutes. Mbappe is seen as one of the most exciting prospects in world football, scoring 26 goals in all competitions last season and helping Monaco win the league and reach the semi-finals of the Champions League.
  11. MADRID: Real Madrid have reached agreement to sign Kylian Mbappe from Monaco for a world record 180 million euros ($210m, £160m), Spanish media reported on Tuesday. Sports daily Marca, citing sources close to the negotiations, said the teenage striker is expected to joining Real "in the next few days" on a six year deal. French newspapers Le Parisien and Nice Matin said Monaco had denied the report. But Marca insisted that Real are set to pay between 150-160m euros with add-ons of between 20 and 30m, dwarfing the current world transfer record of 105m Manchester United paid to lure Paul Pogba from Juventus last year. Real are looking to fill the void left by Alvaro Morata who joined English Premier League champions Chelsea last Friday. If he does arrive at Zinedine Zidane´s European champions the 18-year-old will be on a net annual salary of "seven million" euros, Marca said. Mbappe, under contract at Monaco until 2019, has been wooed by some of Europes' top clubs, including Monaco's arch Ligue rivals Paris Saint-Germain. Last week Monaco issued a warning to the likes of Real and PSG to lay off their starlet. "Top European football clubs made contact with Kylian Mbappé and his entourage without our authorisation," Monaco said on their website. The club said they wanted to remind these clubs that such actions are contrary to French and international regulations. Mbappe scored six goals in 10 Champions League outings and 15 in Ligue 1 as he exploded onto the scene in the second half of last season. On Monday Monaco lost full-back Benjamin Mendy to Manchester City in a world record 52 million (58 million euros, $67 million) deal for a defender.
  12. Teenage star Kylian Mbappe helped Monaco secure their first Ligue 1 title in 17 years with his 15th goal of the season in Wednesday's 2-0 victory at home to Saint-Etienne. The 18-year-old raced clear of the visiting defence to nervelessly roll in the opening goal after 19 minutes at the Stade Louis II as Paris Saint-Germain's four-year reign as French champions came to an end. Valere Germain added a second with the final kick of the match. "We can finally say we are champions. I'm very proud of this team, of these players. It's a dream for me, I'm very happy," Monaco captain Radamel Falcao told Canal+. Leonardo Jardim's side were effectively guaranteed the title after Sunday's 4-0 win over Lille due to their vastly superior goal difference and needed just a point to secure an eighth league crown. Monaco's 11th straight victory bumped them up to 92 points, six ahead of PSG, and they can match the capital club's single-season record of 30 wins in Saturday's final game at Rennes. "We've been able to hold on all the way against teams like Paris and Nice who kept up with the pace until the end," said Mbappe. "Unfortunately for them but luckily for us, we're the ones leaving with the trophy." Not since Claude Puel guided a squad featuring Fabien Barthez, David Trezeguet and Willy Sagnol to the 1999-2000 title had Monaco been crowned kings of France. Saint-Etienne held Monaco to a 1-1 draw in October, but Christophe Galtier's side arrived in the principality low on confidence after their 5-0 thrashing by PSG and decimated by injury. Uncompromising Mbappe's meteoric rise this season has seen him torment some of Europe's leading clubs and it was hardly surprising the teenager made the crucial breakthrough after a cautious start. Stephane Ruffier palmed away a Mbappe snapshot with the first real chance, but there was little he could do moments later when the striker latched onto Radamel Falcao's threaded pass and calmly rounded the Saint-Etienne goalkeeper before slotting home. Monaco were far from their free-flowing best which had seen them become just the fifth team to rack up over 100 goals in a French season, with Danijel Subasic forced to save from a Florentin Pogba header. However Falcao came close to providing Monaco with added breathing space when his powerful header from a corner was superbly kept out by Ruffier. Saint-Etienne youngster Arnaud Nordin charged through the left-hand side of the Monaco defence after setting off from inside his own half, but his final effort lacked the pace to trouble Subasic. Jordan Veretout then skipped beyond Subasic following Henri Saivet's through ball, but Poland international Kamil Glik recovered in time to deny the on-loan Aston Villa midfielder. Germain, who was with the club in 2011 when Monaco were languishing at the foot of the second divison, should have sealed the victory on 74 minutes when Mbappe slid the ball across only for him to shin wide with Ruffier well out of the picture. But he made amends deep into stoppage time as Thomas Lemar sprang a counter-attack that left Germain with the simplest of tap-ins to complete a memorable evening. "We've had a superb season both individually and collectively. I think we fully deserve it," said Germain. "This year we've been uncompromising. You have to congratulate the whole group and especially everyone in the ground who was magnificent tonight."
  13. MONACO: Gonzalo Higuain scored both goals as an imperious Juventus beat Monaco 2-0 in their Champions League semi-final first leg on Wednesday to take a huge step towards next month's final in Cardiff. Both of Higuain's goals came from Dani Alves assists, with the Argentine hitman rounding off a breathtaking team move to open the scoring just before the half-hour mark and converting the second from close range after the break. While the second leg in Turin next Tuesday will be no formality, Juventus have never lost a two-legged European tie to French opposition and so impressive were they at the Stade Louis II that it is hard to imagine Monaco recovering. Higuain, who now has 31 goals this season, received applause from all around the ground as he came off to be replaced by Juan Cuadrado late on after a clinical display that showed just why Juve paid 90 million euros ($98m) to sign him from Napoli last year. In contrast Monaco, having won their previous 13 matches at the Stade Louis II and been so thrilling going forward all campaign, could not find a way through the brilliant away defence. They will now need something very special next week if they are to make it to a first Champions League final since 2004. "Goals were not coming for me in this competition but I knew I just had to stay calm and keep working hard," said Higuain after ending a seven-game run without scoring in the Champions League knockout stages. "We also wanted another clean sheet and we are delighted with the result." Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri raised eyebrows with his team selection as he ditched his favoured back four, bringing Andrea Barzagli into a three-man defence in an attempt to thwart Monaco's prolific attack. The tactic worked, although the absence of the marauding left-back Benjamin Mendy from the home side also played into their hands. Brilliant Buffon Monaco did grow into the game after a slow start and teen sensation Kylian Mbappe was first to test Gianluigi Buffon with a header from Nabil Dirar's ball that the veteran goalkeeper held easily. In the 16th minute the same trio were involved again, Dirar surging down the right and delivering a teasing ball to the near post that Mbappe diverted towards goal, with Buffon saving superbly. Buffon, playing his 149th European game at the age of 39, started his career before Mbappe was born. But he remains one of the world's best and shortly after he was there to turn the ball behind after Radamel Falcao met another Dirar delivery with a terrific leap. Juve are a slick side, sound defensively but with an awesome attacking arsenal of their own and it was they who opened the scoring on 29 minutes in stunning fashion. Paulo Dybala was involved initially before Dani Alves, now nearly 34, surged into the box, holding off Kamil Glik and cutting the ball back for Higuain to sweep home. Higuain bounded over the advertising hoardings and across the running track to celebrate with the away support, before Juve retreated to ensure they held their lead into the break. Although Monaco had glimpses of goal after the restart, with Falcao firing straight at Buffon, they were also their own worst enemies. When Thomas Lemar lost possession in his own half and went down hoping for a free-kick, referee Mateu Lahoz let play continue and Marchisio ran in on goal only to see Danijel Subasic save his shot. But when Tiemoue Bakayoko was hustled off the ball by Dybala, Juventus seized their chance. Alves delivered a hanging ball from wide on the right and Higuain escaped the attentions of Glik to apply a first-time finish. Buffon then intervened to stop Monaco getting a goal back, producing a majestic save in the last minute to tip over Valere Germain's header from a Joao Moutinho free-kick.
  14. PARIS: Edinson Cavani celebrated his new contract with his 45th goal of the season as holders Paris Saint-Germain demolished an inexperienced Monaco 5-0 to reach next month's French Cup final against Angers. Julian Draxler prodded PSG ahead on 26 minutes at the Parc des Princes and Cavani, who on Tuesday signed an extension through to 2020, swiftly doubled the lead as Unai Emery's side dominated their understrength opponents. Safwan Mbae bundled into his own net just after half-time and Blaise Matuidi tapped in a fourth before Marquinhos rounded out a resounding victory in the final minute. PSG thrashed Monaco 4-1 at the start of the month to lift their fourth straight League Cup title and are chasing a third successive sweep of the domestic trophies in France. However, Monaco lead the reigning champions on goal difference with a game in hand in Ligue 1 -- Leonardo Jardim's team also face Juventus next week in the first leg of their Champions League semi-final. With the Portuguese prioritising Europe and Saturday's league clash against Toulouse, Andrea Raggi and Valere Germain were the only regulars to start for Monaco in the French capital. Abdou Diallo forced Alphonse Areola into an excellent save to his right with a header on 20 minutes, but the floodgates opened for PSG once Morgan De Sanctis gifted Draxler the opening goal. Monaco's 40-year-old reserve goalkeeper spilled a straightforward effort from Angel Di Maria, allowing Cavani to nip in and divert the ball across goal for Draxler to slot home. The Uruguayan continues to edge closer towards Zlatan Ibrahimovic's 50-goal haul from last season. He moved to within five of the Swede's total with a lovely flick to steer a pass from Di Maria into the far corner. The Argentine winger, whose poor form had seen him linked with a move to China in January, has been a revelation since the turn of the year and nearly added a third as his teasing low cross bounced back off the post. Mbae compouded Monaco's problems when he turned another Di Maria delivery into his own net on 51 minutes, while Matuidi was the beneficiary of the former Real Madrid and Manchester United star's unselfishness as he turned in a fourth two minutes later. Marquinhos swept in a fifth after Maxwell's drive hit Matuidi and dropped invitingly into the Brazilian's path and PSG will now fancy their chances of landing a record 11th French Cup title. On Tuesday, Angers reached the final for the first time in 60 years -- and just the second in club history -- after a 2-0 home win over Guingamp. Thomas Mangani struck in the first half at a packed Stade Raymond Kopa and goalkeeper Alexandre Letellier saved Jimmy Briand's 88th-minute penalty, before Karl Toko Ekambi struck in stoppage time.
  15. MONACO: Teenage sensation Kylian Mbappe scored again to set Monaco on their way to a 3-1 second-leg victory over Borussia Dortmund on Wednesday that allowed them to win their Champions League quarter-final 6-3 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 3-2, 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 five-minute 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 full-back's powerful left-foot strike stung the palms of goalkeeper Roman Burki, the 18-year-old 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 Champions 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 captain 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 had backfired and he changed things up before the half-hour mark, bringing on Ousmane Dembele for Erik Durm and revertng to a four-man defence. Dortmund now needed to score three times without reply just to force extra time but they did not manage to get one back until three minutes after the restart, Dembele tormenting Mendy on the right before his cutback was lashed home first-time by Reus. But it was Monaco who had the best chances to score again after that, with Burki tipping over Almamy Toure's looping header and Falcao squandering a fine chance before substitute Germain made sure of their place in the last four. He had only just come on for Mbappe when he applied a first-time finish to Lemar's square ball with nine minutes to go, allowing Monaco to join Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid and Juventus in the semi-final draw.
  16. It's been almost six years for Manchester City to boast of a sensational win in a European classic at the Etihad stadium. A game to show them what all the fuss about the Champions League is. Well here it was, one of the best clashes in any competition, at any point over the last few years. It was City who knocked themselves out of Europe, conceding three foolish goals to a deadly Monaco brigade. Then, realising how badly they want to prove themselves in this tournament, the Citizens roared back at Monaco blasting three goals in 11 gleeful minutes to seal the pulsating tie 5-3. © Reuters With some better finishing, a game of emotions that ended in an eight-goal thriller could have easily seen twice as many goals. A missed penalty for Monaco and another unfairly denied to City would have surely sparked a frenzy amongst the fans. © Reuters Arguably, it had the tempo to see any high single-digit score for either side. But, eventually 5-3 was just the way the dice fell. Wednesday's showdown had more plot arcs in 90 minutes than some teams manage in a season. It was Man City's best-ever showing at home since the 94th minute title-decider by Sergio Aguero against Queen's Park Rangers, nearly five years ago. On a night that witnessed fluctuating fortunes and some exciting football, both the teams had their fair of stardom before the hosts eventually prevailed over the visitors. If Aguero's redemption got the City fans on their feet, Radamel Falcao coming back to doing what he does best after forgetful loan spells at Man Utd and Chelsea was surely an endearing experience for the football fans. Then there was Leroy Sane who just gets better and better with every game. In a great display of upper body strength and impeccable speed, the German international is clearly turning out to be Guardiola's best piece of summer business last summer. On the other hand, the night also witnessed the masterclass of the 18-year-old Kylian Mbappe. The worst kept secret in French football showed the English fans what all the fuss is about. His lightning pace, power on the counter attack and eye for the spectacular evoked the best memories of Arsenal legend Thierry Henry. © Reuters His finish in the eight-goal fiesta shows what a special talent he is. No wonder he's tipped to follow in the footsteps of Antoine Griezmann as France's next superstar. His fabulous shot into the top corner gave City keeper Willy Caballero no chance. © Reuters Clearly the defending could have been a lot better, but given the number of goals raising the excitement levels, who's really complaining. Thanks to that, Guardiola's side - who were on the precipice in the Champions League - dragged themselves back to ensure they go to Monaco with a priceless lead. This was an epic football encounter, one that was glorified by comebacks and ever-increasing goals. And, if that's not enough, Falcao's brilliant diving header tops it all. It's been ages since we've seen something as good as this duel. And for that, we thank you Man City and Monaco for making us fall in love with football again.
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