Bayern book Champions League final date with Chelsea

Chelsea will have to overcome Bayern Munich in their own backyard to win the Champions League after the German side defeated Real Madrid 3-1 on penalties to book their place in the Allianz Arena showpiece on May 19.

After a pulsating semi-final second leg that finished 2-1 after 90 minutes (3-3 on aggregate) thanks to a brace from Cristiano Ronaldo and a vital away goal from Arjen Robben, the match progressed through a nervy extra-time period to penalties. In the end, Ronaldo, Kaka and Sergio Ramos proved the villains as Manuel Neuer made two outstanding saves to take Bayern to the final.

The prospect of a Chelsea showdown with former hero Jose Mourinho failed to materialise as Madrid fell short of booking a place in the final in front of their own fans at the Bernabeu. Mourinho, who never managed to take Chelsea to a Champions League final during his time at Stamford Bridge, suffered yet more semi-final heartache as Madrid got it all wrong from 12 yards.

The Portuguese, talking in the pre-match press conference, had complained of "bad luck" when explaining his previous semi-final losses, most notably pointing to Luis Garcia's 'ghost goal' for Liverpool in 2005, but it was Madrid who got a huge stroke of fortune to take the lead in the sixth minute. Angel Di Maria's volley thundered into the hand of David Alaba - who could do nothing about it - and Ronaldo coolly slotted the penalty while Alaba came to terms with the fact he would miss the final after the referee added salt to the wound by booking the Bayern player.

The goal was an extremely harsh blow for the Germans, who now needed to score, but they only had themselves - or more specifically Robben - to blame for not being level two minutes later. A fantastic cross by Alaba found its way to the Dutchman at the back post, but with an open goal beckoning the former Chelsea man sent his volley over the bar from five yards.

Franck Ribery was then denied by a brilliant saving challenge from Sami Khedira after Iker Casillas had spilled a Mario Gomez shot from 20 yards, and Bayern were quickly punished as Madrid's exceptional attack went up the other end to carve out yet another disputed goal.

Mesut Ozil's pass found a fractionally offside Ronaldo breaking into the space left by Karim Benzema's diagonal run, and the Portuguese took one touch before sliding the ball past Neuer as the keeper attempted to set himself.

The scoreline read 2-0 but Bayern were every bit as dangerous as their hosts, so it was no surprise when they halved the deficit on the night to level the tie on aggregate at 3-3. Pepe's unnecessary push on Mario Gomez led to a spot-kick, and Robben - moments after his awful miss - showed plenty of resolve to squeeze his penalty past the diving Casillas.
Both sides tightened up significantly in the second half and opportunities were far harder to come by at either end.

 Benzema brought a smart save from Neuer before the Frenchman wasted Real's clearest opening after the break as he fired over from the edge of the area after being fed by Ronaldo.

Gomez then had the chance to send Bayern into the final with five minutes remaining of normal time as Robben found him free inside the area but he took too many touches and allowed the Real defence to recover and block his effort.

The home side regained the initiative at the start of extra-time but tiredness seemed to affect their decision-making in the final third as Ronaldo dallied to allow Lahm to make a crucial last-ditch challenge, and Kaka did likewise when presented with the ball in the area with just eight minutes remaining.

With no goals scored in the added 30-minute period, the tie went to penalties. Ronaldo and Kaka saw Madrid's first two efforts superbly saved by Neuer down to his right, before Casillas responded by denying Toni Kroos and Philipp Lahm. However, Ramos sent his effort woefully over the bar for Madrid, allowing Bastian Schweinsteiger to send Bayern through.

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