Leicester City's fairy tale run in the Champions League has come to an end after failing get the result they needed against Atletico Madrid. The Spanish side now advances to their third semifinal in four years.
Leicester City 1-1 Atletico Madrid (1-2 agg.)
(Vardy 61' - Niguez 26')
The run is over for Leicester City as they failed to overturn a 1-0 first leg deficit against Atletico Madrid.
The team that were surprise champions of England's Premier League last season are out after reaching the quarterfinal in their first ever Champions League campaign.
"The whole club, from the supporters to the players to the owners can be immensely proud," Leicester manager Craig Shakespeare told British broadcaster BT Sport after the game. "But I've just said to the players that they should want more of this and they've agreed that that's what they want."
The English club had hoped to become the first debutant in the competition since Villarreal in 2006 to reach the semifinals. But they could not get the better of another Spanish side in consecutive rounds after eliminating Sevilla in the last 16.
Saul Niguez scored the decisive away goal for Atletico in the first half, the Leicester defense leaving him unmarked as he headed home a cross from Felipe Luis. Jaime Vardy equalized in the second half by smashing in a deflected shot off Atletico defender Stefan Savic, but Leicester could not register the two goals they needed to advance after that.
Atletico Madrid advance to the semifinals after reaching the final a season ago.
"I'm full of emotion and pride at the performance of my team," said Atletico Madrid coach Diego Simeone said after the game. "I also have to say, what a great performance from our opponents. It was almost a pleasure to compete against them."
dv/mds (AFP, AP)