As Manchester City and Atletico Madrid ended the second leg of the quarter-final in a gruelling draw, the players were seen brawling in the tunnel while they were returning to their dressing rooms. The altercation started as City player Jack Grealish and Madrid defender Stefan Savic confronted each other. Then MCI defender Kyle Walker and Sime Vrsaljko also joined in. Both these players were held back as the police intervened and stopped the brawl.
After the incident, Atleti goalkeeper Jan Oblak said, "In a tense game like that, it can happen. People came on from the bench, there are a lot of nerves, it is normal that there's pushing and some bad words said. What happens in a game, stays there. It was good for City, it wasted a bit of time."
However, City defender Aymeric Laporte expressed his discontent with Madrid’s actions and said, "The ones who were wasting time was their team, getting into absurd fights. “We already know how they are and they always do the same. It's always ugly to see these fights, a lot of fuss is made with little. I think it was bad for them because they were in their best moment in the game.”
We're not so stupid: Simeone
ATM manager Diego Simeone was asked about the brawl and he said, "I didn't see it. I was with the players, applauding the fans. When I went up the stairs [in the tunnel], nobody was there. I didn't applaud the opposition bench, I applauded our fans,"
“Often, people with a large vocabulary are very intelligent, and they manage to praise you with disrespect,” Simeone added. "But those of us who maybe have a smaller vocabulary, we're not so stupid.”
The only thing that makes me happy is winning: Pep Guardiola
MCI manager Pep Guardiola refused to talk about the brawl and talked about how he wanted to focus on the next match. He opined, “Football has a lot of facets. I won't give my opinion on how the opponent behaved. We'll focus on us, playing against maybe the best team in the world, and realise we could compete. But that doesn't make me happy, the only thing that makes me happy is winning.”