Barcelona’s prospects of advancing to the knockout phase of the Champions League were saved by Robert Lewandowski’s two late goals in Wednesday’s 3-3 draw with Inter Milan at Camp Nou.
Barcelona, led by Xavi Hernandez, needed a draw to avoid missing the knockout rounds for the second year in a row, and the Poland international came through for them late in a tense second half.
However, Lewandowski’s late equalizer has given Barcelona a tiny hope of advancing to the next round of the competition, since they still have two games to play. It will need a victory for Inter next week against Viktoria Plzen at home to join Bayern Munich in the round of 16.
Manager of Barcelona Xavi Hernandez said Movistar Plus, “It’s horrible, I think this Champions League is being really cruel to us.” “As of right now, we have no control over the situation. Due to the increased difficulty and complexity of the Champions League, we must now shift our immediate emphasis to Sunday’s El Clasico [against Real Madrid], recover, and return to our primary focus in LaLiga.”
After 15 minutes, Inter’s Edin Dzeko had a goal disallowed by the crossbar as the visitors attempted to build on their 1-0 victory against Barca at the San Siro on Tuesday by continuing their winning streak in the return match.
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Barca worked tirelessly to get on the board, and Ousmane Dembele’s goal, following Sergi Roberto’s pass across the six-yard box, gave them a merited lead going into the break. Nicolo Barella, reacting quickly to a cross from Alessandro Bastoni, evened the score for Inter in the second half.
Shortly after the hour mark, Lautaro Martinez scored a wonderful individual goal for Simone Inzagh’s team, putting further pressure on Barca by settling Hakan Calhanoglu’s long pass over the top of the defense, beating his marker, and rifling home a low drive.
Summer-signing In the 82nd minute, Lewandowski did what he was signed to do, equalizing with a shot past Onana after his first header from a cross into the area was deflected back to him by an Inter defender.
Minutes later, however, Inter’s Robin Gosens scored a goal with a neat finish off the counter, retaking the lead before Lewandowski scored twice with headers.
“Because of all the errors, they were able to score an early goal. Mistakes happen often in soccer, but we can’t afford any right now “I quote Xavi:
“This is the Champions League and you pay a high price for each error you make. You need to win, to defend well, to score. We needed to play the entire game like we did in the first half. That intensity. Now it’s hard because we are not in control anymore.”
Barca has four points and is in third place in Group C, behind Inter by three and Bayern by eight after the latter team’s win against Victoria Plzen on Wednesday guaranteed them a position in the knockout stages.
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