Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Off-target Messi endures least accurate Champions League display since 2011

SoccerNews in La Liga 19 Apr 2017

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Lionel Messi endured a rare off night as Barcelona exited the Champions League at the quarter-final stage after a 3-0 aggregate defeat to Juventus, with the striker having five shots off target at Camp Nou on Wednesday.

Juventus’ determined defence recorded their second clean sheet of the tie to extend their run without conceding a goal in the competition to 531 minutes and Messi struggled to make an impact, missing a close-range volley in the second half and screwing wide in the first period.

Only once before has Messi been less effective in front of goal in the Champions League, with the Argentina international seeing six of his efforts go off target against BATE Borisov in September 2011, a match Barca won 5-0 and in which Messi scored twice regardless of his inaccuracy.

Messi’s woes were in sharp contrast to Cristiano Ronaldo’s decisive hat-trick for Real Madrid in their defeat of Bayern Munich ahead of Sunday’s crucial Clasico clash between the old rivals, who are competing for the LaLiga title.

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