It was yet another night for the history books as Camp Nou turned into a slaughter house run by an agile, swift and tactically disciplined Barcelona side. The final score was Barcelona 7 Bayer Leverkusen 1 but it might have been even worse for the German side.
As I made my way to Camp Nou, I was in an ecstatic mood; it was my first Champions League match, and to top it off, I would get to see, what many consider, “the greatest team in the world.”
On my way, I ran into some Bayer Leverkusen fans who had made the trip just to see their team attempt the unthinkable; making a comeback from a 3-1 first leg deficit.
It was meant as optimism but it would turn out to be prophetic -“tonight, history could be rewritten,” they said and they were right. It would be a night for the history books, but not for their side. Once again, super star striker, Lionel Messi would steal the show, scoring five goals – the most ever by a player in a Champions League match.
Entering the game Bayer had all the statistics stacked against them – Guardiola’s side had not lost any of their last 13 Champions League home matches with their last defeat back in October 2009 against Rubin Kazan.
Furthermore, FC Barcelona had won the last 9 games against German opposition scoring 24 goals, and only conceding four. Finally, the most shocking statistic of all has to be the fact that Bayer had never won an away fixture in the Champions League in 10 years a run that included 12 matches.
If all this was not enough to deter the renowned German spirit what would?
The game reminded me of David and Goliath. Guardiola said before the game that the Germans are tall and strong, but it would seem that the lack of height on the Barca side only worked in their favor.
Bayer Leverkusen Coach, Robin Dutt focused on playing a more defensive game, with eight players playing in defensive positions. But even if he put his entire squad on defense, Barca would still manage to find the gaps and to run circles around the German squad. And here are 4 reasons why Barcelona ran out comfortable winners.
So FC Barcelona glides comfortably into the quarter finals of the Champions League as they look to repeat as Champions of Europe. Certainly no little consolation, as dreams of another La Liga title seems distant.
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