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Mar 12, 2009

FC Barcelona secured a last eight place in this season's Champions League with a sensational 5-2 rout of Lyon at Camp Nou. FC Barcelona produced a display which would have put their recent blip in form to distant memory. Two first half goals from Henry in the span of two minutes , a wonder goal from Messi and another from Eto gave Barcelona the early lead; but Lyon pulled down the lead with goals in end of first half and start of second half. But Barcelona held on to their lead and increased it in the dying moments with a strike from Keita. Once again FC Barcelona's midfield dominated the proceedings and that resulted in a comfortable victory. Villareal is the only Spanish side to make into the Quarter final; whereas all the four English team have made the cut. Guardiola lined up a starting eleven as I predicted. Valdes at Goal; Alves, Pique, Marquez and Sylvinho at the defense. The midfield was made up of Toure, Xavi and Iniesta. Henry, Eto and Messi made up the attacking trio.

From the start FC Barcelona started taking control of then match. But they still couldn't penetrate the Lyon defense. In the 15th minute the result of all the possession started coming into play. Iniesta palyed a great ball to Eto after intercepting a poor pass from Lyon defense but Eto was closed down by Lyon defender and he could only shot high. But that was the trailer for what was coming. In the 25th minute Marquez cut down a ball to Benzema and in turn send in a great ball putting Henry ahead of defense. Henry made no mistake with his finishing and took Barca 1-0 ahead and 2-1 up in aggregate. After two minutes Henry struck again to increase the lead to 2-0. Eto played the ball from left to Xavi in the middle, who put the ball to an unmarked Henry on the left inside the box, who again made no mistake slotting the ball low past the goal keeper. In the 40th minute Messi who was kind of quite showed his class. Pique sent a long ball to Messi on the right; he took the ball and set off on a tremendous Copyrighted run of his skipping past three defenders before polaying the ball to Eto; Eto stopped the ball and played it back to Messi who curled the ball low past a diving Goal Keeper. In the 43rd minte Eto made the lead 4-0 after Boumsong missed a crucial interception from a Henry pass. In the next minute Lyon pulled one back from a Makoun header. Makoun rose above everyone in the defense and exposed Barca's inability in defending set-pieces.

The second half started with another goal for Lyon.In the 48th minute Juninho made it 4-2 sparking an expectation of revival among Lyon fans. Delgado got away free off Iniesta on the right and Benzema played a clever dummy on his cross to put Juninho clear on goal. Lyon was trying to get physical to upset Barca's rhythm. But the tactic never worked as Barca soon settled back to their normal ways. In the 59th minute the Lyon goal keeper denied Henry of a deserving hat-trick. In the 90th minute Bojan was denied by the goal keeper after he was set up by Xavi. Juninho then was sent-off for a second booking. In the 94th minute Xavi played Keita through with a great ball, who rounded off keeper and slotted the ball back into the net to take Barca's score to 5-2.

We played a sensational first half; but still there were enough vulnerabilities at the defense. Iniesta and Xavi had a majestic game and as I mentione earlier were responsible in taking the pressure of the defense. Henry was clinical with his finish, something which was missing for some games. But the best news is Eto getting bakc on the score-sheet. I have a feeling that we would be facing Manchester United in the Quarter-final, eventhough I would definitely prefer Porto.

HighLights : FC Barcelona vs Lyon

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1 comments:

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