Manchester City and Real Madrid are on to the UEFA Champions League quarterfinals after easing through the second leg of their round-of-16 matchups on Tuesday.
An absolute rocket of a goal from Kevin De Bruyne in the 12th minute powered City past Borussia Monchengladbach, while Sergio Ramos' 60th-minute penalty kick all but iced a win over Atalanta. Tuesday's winners await the outcome of Friday's quarterfinals draw with two spots in the round of eight still up for grabs.
Dortmund, Liverpool, Manchester City, Paris Saint-Germain, Porto and Real Madrid will be joined by the winners between Bayern Munich-Lazio and Chelsea-Atletico. The first legs of the quarters are set for April 6 and 7 with the second legs scheduled for April 13 and 14.
Here's a look at how Manchester City and Real Madrid fared in moving one step closer to the UEFA title.
Manchester City 2-0 Borussia Monchengladbach (Manchester City win 4-0 on aggregate)
Real Madrid 3-1 Atalanta (Real Madrid win 4-1 on aggregate)
City was not wasting any time putting itself into the quarters Tuesday, with a goal from Ilkay Gundogan finding the back of the net just six minutes after De Bruyne's blast.
Pep Guardiola was able to rely on his starting 11 for the vast majority of the match, making key defensive substitutions beginning around the 60th minute. Raheem Sterling took over for Gundogan at the 70th minute, and Sergio Aguero replaced Bernardo Silva just five minutes later.
That Borussia only got six shot attempts off—with just three on goal—made life that much easier for MCFC.
Through eight contests in the Champions League, City has allowed just one goal and has become just the third team in league history with seven consecutive clean sheets, per Opta Joe. Only AC Milan in 2005 and Arsenal in 2006 have put together that kind of streak. Both clubs found themselves runners-up in those years with Milan falling to Liverpool in the final while Arsenal fell to Barcelona the following year.
At the rate City scores, however, it has just as good a shot of breaking through that ceiling as any club.
Borussia saw that firsthand.
Silva scored in the 29th minute of the first leg back on Feb. 24 only to win a free kick that helped set up Gundogan's back-breaker in the second leg. Against another overmatched opponent, City had no trouble proving itself yet again.
The same went for Real Madrid, which seemingly toyed with Atalanta for much of the first half before ensuring there would be no late comeback to spoil the victory.
After holding to a draw through 30 minutes, Karim Benzema broke open the scoring in the 34th minute with his 70th career Champions League goal to move Real Madrid ahead 2-0 on aggregate. Benzema is just the fifth player in UCL history to reach the plateau, putting him alongside Lionel Messi, Robert Lewandowski, Cristiano Ronaldo and Raul Gonzalez. Messi still reached the mark the fastest of any of the five, needing just 90 games while Benzema used 126 matches to get there—the second-most behind Gonzalez (139).
Ramos joined Benzema on the score sheet early in the second half with his penalty kick, while Marco Asensio netted another for Madrid in the 84th minute—just seconds after Luis Muriel spoiled a clean sheet for keeper Thibaut Courtois in the 83rd minute.
Unlike MCFC, the Madrid goalie was kept extremely busy as Atalanta had five of 13 shots on goal.
Perhaps there was a reason for Courtois' confidence, however, considering Real Madrid has not been eliminated since 2015 when Ramos has been in the lineup.
That confidence clearly carried over to Asensio, who has now picked up goals for Madrid during the knockout stage in 2017, 2018, 2019 and 2021.
Both City and Madrid proved they belong in the quarterfinals. Regardless of their draw Friday, they don't need to show much more to prove themselves worthy of advancing to the semis. Getting there is just a much different story.