On March 8, FC Barcelona made the greatest comeback in Champions League history. FC Barcelona entered today’s match with hopes of turning around a four-goal deficit. Luis Enrique and his men had received negative comments following their (0-4) thrashing in Paris. However, he was positive that his team could overturn the tie.
FC Barcelona played with the 3-4-3 formation. Luis Enrique’s comeback team was: Ter Stegen, Mascherano, Umtiti, Pique, Rafinha, Busquets, Iniesta, Messi, Suarez, and Neymar. He wanted the team to be able to attack while controlling the midfield. He used this formation in Barcelona’s (6-1) victory against Sporting Gijon in La Liga.
The perfect night began with a Luis Suarez goal in the third minute due to bad defending from the visitor’s side. Before the end of the half, Iniesta was able to pull off a backheel shot that led to Layvin Kurzawa’s own goal. Barcelona went into halftime with a (2-0) lead.
Five minutes after the start of the second half, Lionel Messi converted a penalty in the 50th minute after Meunier slipped and brought down Neymar inside the box. Edinson Cavani would score his eighth goal of the competition in the 62nd minute, cutting down short Barcelona’s dream of a historic comeback.
It wasn’t until the 88th minute that Barcelona finally scored another goal. Neymar scored an amazing free kick, to what it seemed to be a consolation goal. However, a controversial penalty on Suarez was called in the 90th minute. Neymar would score the penalty, tying the game (5-5) in aggregate with 5 minutes of stoppage time. In the 90+5 minute, Neymar chipped the ball into the box and Sergi Roberto scored the winning goal. Barcelona won on aggregate (6-5), making them the first club in the history of the Champions League to overturn a four-goal deficit.
Barcelona had 70.7% possession in tonight’s match with a total of 20 shots, 491 accurate passes, and six goals. The man of the match is unsurprisingly Neymar as he scored two goals and made one assist. He was involved in almost every attacking play and he took on Messi’s mantle of a creator. Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez did manage to score, but they were not as effective as Neymar tonight. Each member of the MSN bagged a goal, making their presence known in the historic comeback.
Barcelona’s defense performed well tonight. The back three of Mascherano, Pique and Umtiti were able to hold back some of PSG’s attacks. PSG had a total of eight shots, three of them which were on target. However, Cavani’s goal slipped right through them and made Barcelona’s chance of a comeback more difficult. The back three and Ter Stegen also got lucky with Cavani’s shot to the post, which would have made the comeback more difficult than it already was.
Lionel Messi leads the Champions League scoring table with 11 goals and two assists in seven games, Neymar has four goals and eight assists, and Luis Suarez has three goals and three assists. Messi has been playing absolutely brilliant throughout the entire season as he has scored 41 goals and assisted 15 goals in 41 games.
It was a magical night in the Camp Nou as 96,290 people witnessed the greatest comeback in the history of the Champions League. Social media erupted as they were reacting to Barcelona’s victory. Fans all around the world share their love for football and Barcelona as they made the impossible possible. However, no one can possibly comprehend the feeling PSG fans are feeling right now. When it looked like they had this tie in the bag, it blew up in their face with a terrible performance.
What does this mean for Barcelona? The Catalan club is alive in every single competition. Barcelona is in first place in La Liga, a finalist for the Copa del Rey final against Alaves, and now they have advanced to the Quarter-Finals of the Champions League. Barcelona is in their best moment, and they must continue to demonstrate their greatness. The season is far from over, but for now, Luis Enrique and his men can celebrate after tonight’s historic comeback.