Barcelona came into the second leg against Paris Saint-Germain facing a 4-1 deficit, knowing that they needed another miraculous performance if they wanted to reach the UEFA Champions League quarter-finals. Unfortunately for them they were unable to do so, and while Lionel Messi did manage to equalise on the night after Kylian Mbappe’s penalty, it wasn’t enough as PSG progressed into the last eight.
Hope for Barcelona
Even though they didn’t really come that close to overturning the deficit that was put in their way, it has to be said that this felt like the Barcelona of old. From peppering the PSG goal to having long spells of possession, they would’ve had a real chance if their killer instinct was switched up to a slightly higher level. Sure, the French champions were able to defend resolutely, but there’s still something burning in this Barca side that Ronald Koeman can harness.
Messi’s highs and lows
An absolutely insane 25-yard strike from Lionel Messi levelled the game up and seemed to give many the belief that Barca could go on and get the job done. Alas, when his penalty was saved on the stroke of half time, it felt as if their chance to really get back into the tie had been and gone. Koeman said after the game that performances like this will help the Argentine when making up his mind about potentially staying at the Nou Camp, and we’re interested to see whether that comes to fruition.
One step further for PSG?
Paris Saint-Germain are priced at 5/1 with 888sport to win the European Cup this season which leaves them behind just Manchester City and Bayern Munich in the eyes of the bookmakers. They were able to reach the final last season only to fall short at the final hurdle courtesy of the aforementioned Bayern, but now that they’ve been able to get past a side like Barca, their confidence should be through the roof. There are going to be even tougher challenges ahead but we think they’ve got what it takes to go all the way back to the final.
PSG: Navas (8.5), Kurzawa (6), Kimpembe (6.5), Marquinhos (6.5), Florenzi (6.5), Verratti (7), Paredes (7), Gueye (6.5), Mbappe (7.5), Icardi (7), Draxler (6.5), Pereira (6.5), Dagba (6), Diallo (7), Rafinha (6), Di Maria (6.5)
Barcelona: ter Stegen (6), Mingueza (6), de Jong (7), Lenglet (5.5), Dest (6.5), Busquets (7), Pedri (6.5), Alba (7), Griezmann (7), Dembele (6.5), Messi (8.5), Moriba (6), Firpo (6.5), Trincao (6), Braithwaite (6), Pjanic (6)
Referee: Anthony Taylor
Goals: Mbappe pen :: Messi
Yellow Cards: Kurzawa, Paredes, Gueye, Icardi, de Jong
Red Cards: N/A
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