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Messi Double Sends Barca Into Last 16


Champions League

Messi Double Sends Barca Into Last 16

To lock in qualification for the Champions League last 16 as Group C winners, Lionel Messi scored two goals as Barcelona won 2-0. The Glasgow victory and Manchester City’s draw against Borussia Monchengladbach are positive changes after their poor performance against Malaya during last time out, with Messi’s return from illness and Luis Suarez coming back after suspension.
Those changes facilitated by Luis Enrique brought rich rewards as Messi opened the scoring through the first half and an ending win with a second-half penalty after Suarez had been fouled by Emilio Izaguirre.
Such outcomes were necessary for Barca, who played 7-0 at Camp Nou with few wins in two of their previous five games in all competitions.
Despite the high competitive spirit shown by the Celtic team, it is established that their hopes are over for 2016-2017. They are ending at the bottom as they sit three points away from Gladbach and have a worse head-to-head record.
In this season’s competition, Messi, who now has nine goals, sent an early effort with the attempt of turning in Ivan Rakitic’s bouncing header. Neymar drew out Messi using a left-hand channel smart move, and he took the pass in his stride to send a first-time volley past Craig Gordon at his near post, the 3visitors’ 400th goal in all competitions under the management of Luis Enrique.
The Celtic gave a positive response as Moussa Dembele’s powerful shot compelled Marc-Andre ter Stegen into action. The second half started with Callum McGregor’s shot being pushed away by Ter Stegen before Brendan Rodgers’ men missed a golden chance to equalize.
Dembele found a perfect position to score when he sent a weak header straight at Ter Stegen from six yards after a cross from James Forrest, who had replaced Scott Sinclair at the break.
That was a painful miss as it doubled Barca lead in the 55th minute, that miss proved costly with Barca increasing their lead in the 55th minute. Sergi Roberto’s through ball resulted in Suarez being brought down by Izaguirre in the penalty area, and Messi stepped up to send the spot-kick straight down the middle.
This win for Barcelona means they have an advantage going into the next match against Gladbach, who will be without Neymar who received a red card for an offense with Mikael Lustig.

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