Liverpool and Barcelona through to the last eight of the Champions League - Soccer Times

Liverpool and Barcelona through to the last eight of the Champions League


When night’s last-16 Champions League ties saw victories for Barcelona and Liverpool, who sealed their spots in the quarter-finals of the competition. Here is what happened in those vital second leg games:

Mane brace beat Bayern

Liverpool recorded a 3-1 victory at Bayern Munich to progress to the last eight after the first leg at Anfield had finished 0-0.

After a quiet opening to the game, Liverpool took the lead on 26 minutes. Virgil van Dijk fired a long ball over the Bayern defence, which Sadio Mane controlled, before turning his back goal with the outrushing Manuel Neuer in close proximity. The Senegalese star kept his cool to chip the ball into the far corner.

The home side looked toothless at times in attack. However, the Bavarians equalised on 39 minutes. Winger Serge Gnabry beat Andy Robertson down the Bayern right and Liverpool centre-back Joel Matip turned the centre past his own goalkeeper. There were very few attacks of note until Gnabry’s cross from the right narrowly evaded striker Robert Lewandowski. At the other end of the pitch, Neuer kept out a Mohamed Salah effort.

Liverpool doubled their lead with a rare effort on goal on 69 minutes, as centre-back Virgil van Dijk rose to powerfully head home from a James Milner corner kick. The Reds completed the victory with six minutes remaining, as Mane scored a diving header from a Salah’s far post cross.

Last season’s finalists will feel confident of making it deep into the competition once again after the victory. Bayern will once again feel they have underachieved in Europe’s elite competition.

Barcelona hammer Lyon

Barcelona booked their spot in the quarter-finals by recording a 5-1 home win over Lyon at the Nou Camp.

The first leg in France had finished goalless, but it took the Spanish champions just 17 minutes to take the lead in the clash. Former Manchester City centre-back Jason Denayer produced a poor tackle on Luis Suarez in the penalty area and Lionel Messi made no mistake with a chipped penalty kick.

Philippe Coutinho doubled the home sides lead on 31 minutes after Moussa Dembele had missed a golden opportunity to equalise for the French side. Coutinho had the simple task of tapping home after Suarez had easily beat his defender Fernando Marcal.

Lyon looked to be back in the game and the tie just before the hour mark. Striker Lucas Tousart volleyed home. However, the visitor’s hopes of recovering the tie last just 20 minutes, as Barcelona scored their third goal on 78 minutes. A quick counter-attack saw Messi beat the Lyon substitute goalkeeper before firing home.

With Lyon looking for goals to get them back into the tie, the Catalan giants took advantage. Firstly, centre-back Gerard Pique slid home an effort after good work by Messi. The Argentinian star was also involved in Barcelona’s fifth goal on 86 minutes, with Ousmane Dembele the recipient this time around.

The victory was a comfortable one in the end for Barcelona, who remain one of the favourites to lift the Champions League trophy this season.

Can Liverpool or Barcelona win the Champions League this season?

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