Wednesday, March 3, 2021
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Messi’s Barca cruise past Man United

Lionel Messi’s brace helped FC Barcelona to a resounding 3-0 win over Manchester United in the Champions League last eight second-leg.

No surprises from Barca crept up, as the travelling side dropped Romelu Lukaku and Diogo Dalot, while Luke Shaw was suspended which saw the return of Marcus Rashford, Phil Jones and Jesse Lingard.

United looked to steal an early lead, but Rashford’s toe-poke attempt hit the top of the crossbar with Marc Andre Ter Stegen staring.

Barca looked to maintain their 30-match unbeaten run in the tournament after receiving a penalty on 10 minutes but it was chalked off by the Video Assistant Referee (VAR).

The Catalan giants went ahead anyway after talisman Lionel Messi weaved past Fred 17 minutes in to find the bottom corner.

Three minutes later, Messi then pounced on a loose ball near the edge of the area to see his low shot helped into the net by David De Gea for his brace.

Sergi Roberto nearly added a third a few minutes to halftime, but De Gea pulled miraculous goal-line save with Ivan Rakitic unable to steer in the follow-up.

Barca started the second half with the same tempo, whilst the Red Devils chased shadows from all areas.

As such, the Catalans increased their advantage on the hour mark after Phillipe Coutinho found the top corner with a superb strike from distance.

With Barca cruising to victory, both sides made changes with Diogo Dalot on for Anthony Martial after 65 minutes and Nelson Semedo on for Sergi Roberto six minutes later.

United looked for a consolation late on through a diving header from Alexis Sanchez, but Ter Stegen’s save kept out the Chilean against his former club.

Messi looked for a third late on, but De Gea’s two-handed punch prevented further misery on the Red Devils who bow out of the competition. Kickoff

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