Bayern Munich beats Sevilla 2-1 in Champions League

Bayern Munich beats Sevilla 2-1 in Champions League
The Associated Press

SEVILLE, Spain (AP) — With the help of two deflected shots, Bayern Munich came from behind to beat Sevilla 2-1 Tuesday in the first leg of the Champions League quarterfinals.

After being outplayed by the hosts early on and conceding a 32nd-minute opener by Pablo Sarabia, Bayern rallied with an own goal by Jesus Navas before halftime and secured the victory with a second-half header by Thiago Alcantara. Both times the ball deflected off a defender to take Sevilla goalkeeper David Soria out of play.

Bayern now only needs a draw in the second leg in Munich next week to reach the semifinals for the fifth time in six seasons.

Sevilla, playing in the last eight for the first time in 60 years, has never made it to the semifinals in the Champions League.

In Tuesday’s other game, defending champion Real Madrid defeated Juventus 3-0 in Turin after two goals from Cristiano Ronaldo — including a stunning overhead kick to make it 2-0 in the second half.

Sevilla, which eliminated Manchester United in the round of 16, started playing well and threatened the most early at Sanchez-Pizjuan Stadium.

Sarabia opened the scoring with a close-range shot after beating Bayern defender Juan Bernat to a pass by Sergio Escudero into the area. Sarabia, who had missed a great chance a few minutes earlier, controlled the ball with his upper body before calmly finding the net.

The hosts seemed in control but Bayern levelled with fortuitous goal five minutes later. Franck Ribery tried to make a low cross into the area but the ball deflected off Navas and was redirected toward the near corner. Soria tried to make it back but he couldn’t keep the ball from trickling across the goal line after it hit the post.

Bayern began taking control of the game in the second half and started creating more chances. Javi Martinez had his close-range shot saved by Soria in the 66th, and two minutes later Alcantara scored the winning goal after a cross by Ribery. This time the ball deflected off Escudero before going in.

Sevilla is trying to establish itself as a contender in the Champions League after dominating the second-tier Europa League in recent years, having won the competition three times in four seasons.

The Spanish club was eliminated by Leicester in the round of 16 last year.

Bayern, a five-time European champion, has made it to the last eight nine times in 10 seasons. It arrived for Tuesday’s game coming off a 6-0 rout of Borussia Dortmund in the Bundesliga, a competition it looks set to win for the sixth consecutive time.

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