UEFA Champions League
Camp Nou, Barcelona, Spain
Juventus produced a fantastic defensive display to hold Barcelona 0-0 away at the Camp Nou to seal a place in the Champions League Semi-finals.
The Catalans had to overturn a 3-0 deficit from the First-leg at the Juventus Stadium and having recorded an emphatic come-back victory in the previous round against Paris Saint-Germain, it seemed possible. However it wasn’t to be as the Bianconeri brilliantly protected their First-leg deficit to frustrate the Blaugrana and knock them out.
After quite an evenly contested first 10 minutes, the visitors went close to opening the scoring on the night. After Gonzalo Higuaín’s pass was intercepted by Sergio Busquets, the ball fell to Argentine again on the volley, but he fired just over the bar.
Two minutes later the Bianconeri had another good chance when Paulo Dybala found Juan Cuadrado with a nice headed pass, but the Colombian’s acrobatic effort on the volley cleared the bar.
Two minutes later the hosts went close when a cross-field pass from Lionel Messi almost found Jordi Alba, but the ball was just slightly over-hit. A minute later the Catalan side had another great chance to reduce the aggregate deficit when Alba’s deflected pull-back fell into the path of Messi, who fired the loose ball inches wide of the far-post with Gianluigi Buffon rooted to the spot.
In the 30th minute Barcelona went close when Messi drove forward to fire an effort at-goal that Buffon was forced to palm away, but the loose ball fell to the Argentine, who fired the loose ball wide into the side-netting from a tight-angle.
Seven minutes later the Italians went close to extending their aggregate lead when Miralem Pjanić wonderfully found Higuaín with a lofted pass but the Argentine’s effort on the volley was tame and Marc-André Ter Stegen made a comfortable save.
Four minutes into the restart the visitors went close to taking the lead on the night when Dybala won possession deep into Barcelona’s half, the ball was eventually played to Cuadrado, who fired an effort just wide of the far-post.
Three minutes later the Turin side went close again when Cuadrado surged forward before cutting-inside to fire an effort that Ter Stegen tipped behind.
Three minutes later Barcelona went close when Messi curled an effort that deflected inches wide of the target. Messi then curled a freekick just wide, two minutes later.
In the 62nd minute the visitors went close when Pjanić’s deflected effort off Gerard Piqué forced Ter Stegen into a good save, with the keeper tipping the ball over the bar.
Three minutes later the hosts should have taken the lead on the night after a Barcelona corner was spilled by Buffon, the ball was then played into the path of Messi, who looked set to score, but he fired the ball over the bar on the volley when he should have scored. Sergi Roberto then went close when he cut-inside to fire an effort just wide of the target, three minutes later.
In the 79th minute Barcelona nearly pulled a goal back when Neymar sent a teasing delivery into the path of substitute Javier Mascherano but the substitute couldn’t get the decisive touch and Buffon was forced to palm the ball away.
Seconds later the visitors had a good chance on the break as Cuadrado fed Sami Khedira, who had Mario Mandžukić in support, but the German opted to shoot and Ter Stegen made a simple save.
Five minutes from time the Italians went close to adding to their tally when substitute Mario Lemina surged forward before firing a tame effort that deflected just wide.
The result meant that Juventus progressed into the Champions League Semi-finals while Barcelona bowed out of the competition.