Bayern Munich stunned by Villarreal in Champions League drama

Underdogs Villarreal scored an 88th-minute equalizer through substitute Samu Chukwueze to snatch a stunning 1-1 draw at Bayern Munich and advance to the Champions League semi-finals 2-1 on aggregate.

Six-time European champions Bayern had leveled the scores after losing 1-0 in Spain last week when Robert Lewandowski burst through the post to take the lead in the 52nd minute with his 13th goal of the competition this season.


But they failed to find their way back into the net despite intense second-half pressure and several missed chances.

Instead, it was Villarreal, semi-finalists in 2006, who scored against the run of play with Chukwueze beating goalkeeper Manuel Neuer with a left-footed effort to silence the home crowd.

The result means Bayern exit the Champions League in the quarter-finals for the second year in a row.

Villarreal are in the semi-finals for the first time since 2006 and will face either Liverpool or Benfica in the last four. The English side take a 3-1 lead in Wednesday’s return leg at Anfield.

Unai Emery’s Villarreal absorbed everything Bayern threw at their defense apart from Lewandowski’s strike early in the second half.

It was a heartbreaking night for Bayern, who dominated for most of the game before Chukwueze scored four minutes after coming on.

Bayern started with a rush, but Villarreal’s defense was on the lookout for any threat.

Bayern coach Julian Nagelsmann has changed his formation, opting for a three-man defense instead of a four-man defense.

Villarreal were pinned in their own half for most of the first half as Benjamin Pavard, Dayot Upamecano and Lucas Hernandez dictated play from behind.

Yet for all their dominance of possession, a Jamal Musiala header straight off Villarreal keeper Geronimo Rulli was Bayern’s only clear chance of a scoreless first half.

Lewandowski, who was largely well organised, secured the game’s first booking.

Villarreal’s back four worked tirelessly throughout, but left-back Pervis Estupinan had a particularly busy first half as Leroy Sane constantly probed the flank.

Bayern finally broke the deadlock in the 52nd minute.

A loose pass out of defense only reached Kingsley Coman, who moved the ball towards Thomas Muller.

The German star slid the ball past Lewandowski, who managed to fire past two defenders and the Rulli dive.

The Polish striker gave a shout to celebrate his 13th goal in 10 Champions League appearances this season.

Bayern kept the pressure on as Muller closed in with a diving header and found his head in his hands, as did Coman when he fired a shot shortly after.

Nagelsmann sent in fresh legs in a bid to secure a decisive second goal within 90 minutes by bringing in Serge Gnabry and Alphonso Davies.

However, Villarreal stunned the home crowd when Gerard Moreno broke down on the left.

He placed a low cross which Chukwueze sent spinning over Neuer to send the Spaniards past.

Updated: April 12, 2022, 9:30 p.m.