Barcelona Progress To Semi-Finals

Barcelona virtually cruised to the semi-finals of the Uefa Champions League as they defeated Paris Saint-Germain 2-0 in their second leg clash at the Camp Nou on Tuesday night.  The result sees Luis Enrique’s men progress 5-1 on aggregate.  The Catalans were off the mark as early as the third minute, as the visitors failed to contain their pressure game.

David Luiz conceded a clumsy yellow card after he took a heavy first touch and had to foul an opponent in order to block Lionel Messi and co from heading towards his goals.  The opening minutes were a one way trip as Barça controlled possession with their tiki-taka short passing game.  In the 11th minute Andres Iniesta played a clever throughball to Neymar who pounced in the box.

He took a touch and drove the ball into the net.  Six minutes later Zlatan Ibrahimovic also found the back of the net on the other side but was rightly judged offside.  In the 23rd minute a scuffed shot hit Gerard Pique’s arm but PSG’s penalty appeals fell on deaf ears.

The home team then continued to control the game, with Dani Alves working the right side of their play well.  In the 34th minute Alves found space on the right and he sent a dangerous cross which could have resulted to nothing had Luiz not tried to play the offside trap.  As the Brazilian defender stepped forward Neymar found himself unmarked and headed home for his second of the night.

At half-time the score was 2-0.  Six minutes into the second half Neymar and Luis Suarez combined well at the edge of the box and the ball was slipped to Messi who didn’t get enough power on his clipped-shot to cause much trouble for the keeper.  In the 58th minute Marco Verratti attempted a long range effort which he saw sail completely off the mark.

In the 71st minute Luiz was called into action again as he cut out an Alves cross that was bound to reach either Neymar, Messi or Suarez, who were patiently waiting for the ball in the box.  Three minutes later Ibrahimovic took a shot that was blocked by the keeper’s feet.  In the 77th minute Edinson Cavani’s effort hit the side netting after he was played in by Ibrahimovic.

Two minutes from regular time Ezequiel Lavezzi knocked down the ball for Ibrahimovic who played the ball back.  Lavezzi shot for goal but didn’t find the result he was looking for.  With little added time Messi had a chance to put his name on the score sheet when he shot for goal but saw his effort go just wide of the posts.

With the 3-1 away win Luis Enrique’s men achieved in Paris a fortnight ago.the aggregate between the two legs at the end of the match stood at 5-1 to see Barcelona take a step closer to the final.