MADRID // It was a powerful image and an even more impressive sound, 75,000 people singing 'Yes We Can!' By kick-off in last night's Champions League semi-final second leg between Real Madrid and Borussia Dortmund, they really seemed to believe it.
But even that was not enough as Real Madrid, seeking an improbable comeback after a 4-1 defeat in Dortmund failed to score until the 83rd minute.
Karim Benzema and Sergio Ramos then did strike in the final seven minutes of normal time and Dortmund had to survive a nervous period of added on time before they could celebrate their victory, 4-3 on aggregate, and a place in the final at Wembley Stadium on May 25.
The huge crowd craved an early goal. When Mesut Ozil set Gonzalo Higuain up with a perfect chance in the fourth minute, the Bernabeu held its breath.
The Argentine had goalkeeper Roman Weidenfeller to beat from eight yards, but the indecisive shot was blocked by the 'keeper's feet.
Dortmund were spinning and uncharacteristically nervy under the onslaught, conceding two needless corners, they held out and even threatened themselves. Lewandowski, scorer of all four Dortmund goals in the first leg, saw a 13th minute shot blocked.
Mario Gotze, the attacking midfielder who will transfer to Bayern Munich for a record German fee in the close season, limped off after 15 minutes, but Dortmund barely had chance to think about his loss for Madrid continued to pound the their goal and showed an assertiveness absent in the first leg.
Mourinho's men were unrelenting with Ozil, Ronaldo and Di Maria interchanging to get the better of Piszczek and Schmelzer. But they couldn't score and couldn't break the deadlock in a first half which saw four yellow cards, three of them in the final three minutes.
The game was end-to-end until the first lull came after 30 minutes. Dortmund's defensive composure improved, Mats Hummels began to cut out cross-field balls and the intensity of the crowd dipped too, the cries of support from the stands turning to desperate curses.
Madrid flickered brightly at the start of the first half, but the noise now came from the 5,000 visiting fans bouncing in unison, a wall of yellow singing 'Borussia! Borussia!' as Gundogan seemed certain to score in the 63rd minute, but for a superb Lopez save. By that time, Madrid were playing three in defence.
Madrid were rewarded for the efforts with the late goals as they almost pulled off an amazing fightback, but Dortmund held firm bravely to deny them.
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