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Atletico and Bayern progress in Champions League

Arjen-Robben2Atletico Madrid and Bayern Munich are the first two names in the hat for the Champions League quarter-finals as respective 4-1 and 1-1 results at home saw AC Milan and Arsenal get eliminated.

Arsenal put up a spirited performance in Munich, but it was always going to be a near impossible task of the Gunners are losing 2-0 at home last month.

Arsenal were competitive all night without seriously troubling Bayern goalkeeper Manuel Neuer. When Bastian Schweinsteiger put Bayern 1-0 up early in the second half, it looked like it could be another long night for Arsenal fans. But after Lukas Podolski tied the game, Arsenal had Bayern on the back foot for a 10-15 period when the European champions looked really wobbly. But Arsenal were never able to create another clear goalscoring chance and they meekly went out of the tournament.

But that 10-15 spell in the second half exposed the vulnerability of this Bayern side. They are great going forward, but their two central defenders can be exposed by top strikers. Unfortunately Arsenal do not have any of those!

In the night’s other game Diego Costa scored twice as Atletico sealed sealed passage into the last eight for the first time in 17 years. Costa, whose late header earned Atletico a 1-0 first-leg win at San Siro, acrobatically put the Spanish side ahead with the first chance of Tuesday’s last-16 second leg but former Real Madrid star Kaka headed Milan level.

Arda Turan’s deflected strike made it 2-1 to Atletico before the break, and then second-half goals from Raul Garcia and Costa sealed a deserved 5-1 aggregate victory for the Spanish side.