FC Barcelona’s journey to the Champions League Final in Madrid next month is almost coming to fruition following their 3-0 sensational victory over Liverpool at the Camp Nou. Barça played in front of over 98,000 of their Blaugrana faithful and did not disappoint. After 26 minutes, Barça struck first blood when former Liverpool striker Luis Suárez flicked Jordi Alba’s cross over the top of Liverpool’s keeper Alisson to make it 1-0. After being denied a goal against Manchester United, Suárez finally got to celebrate his first Champions League goal of the season. Neither side would score the remainder of the half but that would change in the second half.
Although Liverpool enjoyed possession slightly more than Barça, they could not find the equalizer. Barça would make Liverpool pay when they doubled their lead in the 75th minute. The goal came during a counter attack that saw Suárez’s effort bounced off the crossbar and fell to Messi who chested down the rebound and walked the ball into the goal to make it 2-0. That goal excited the Blaugrana faithful but seven minutes later, the Camp Nou would erupt when Messi scored a free kick from 25 yards out to make it 3-0. That was Messi’s 600th club goal and made Barça’s hopes of reaching the Champions League Final real. Barça should have scored a fourth in stoppage time but substitute Dembélé fluffed his chance. The second leg will take place next Tuesday and Barça will travel to Celta Vigo for their league fixture on Saturday.
Match Info (From Sport):
FC Barcelona: Ter Stegen, Sergi Roberto (Aleñá, 92′), Piqué, Lenglet, Alba, Busquets, Rakitic, Arturo Vidal, Messi, Coutinho (Semedo, 59′) & Suárez (Dembélé, 92′).
Liverpool: Alisson, Gómez, Matip, Van Dijk, Robertson, Fabinho, Keita (Henderson, 23′), Milner (Origi, 84′), Salah, Wijnaldum (Firmino, 78′) & Mané.
Goals: 1-0, Suárez (26′); 2-0, Messi (75′); 3-0, Messi (82′).
Referee: Bjorn Kuipers (Holland).
Cautions: Lenglet (38′); Fabinho (80′).