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Champions League QF 2nd Leg Review Part 1


Man City 1 vs. 2 Liverpool (1-5)

City had it all to do in the 2nd leg and Pep selected a very attacking lineup of 3-1-3-3, Liverpool had the same starting 11 as the 1st leg with the only exception being Wijnaldum who came in for a suspended Henderson. The game started of brilliantly for Manchester City as they managed to score via Jesus in the 2nd minute. Much like the Manchester derby on Saturday, City dominated the first half with Liverpool having no shots on goal and barely being able to string two passes together. There was contentious decision late in the first half when Milner scored an own goal but was saved by the linesman who ruled it offside. A half that had seen 5 yellow cards dealt to players was followed by Pep being sent to the stands at half time for engaging with the referee. 

Similar to United in the second half, Klopp seems to have given a rallying team talk as Liverpool started to play like they had at Anfield. The pressure seemed to be mounting on City and that led to several misplaced passes by them. The break came in the 56th minute when Firmino ran through on goal and fumbled only for Salah to pick up the pieces and finish to give Liverpool a very important away goal. Now needing to score four goals City players deflated and Firmino added a second in the 77th minute to give Liverpool the win and a place in the Champions League semi finals. 

A 3rd straight defeat for City in the space of a week, and they play Spurs at Wembley next. City definitely deserve to be Premier League champions this season, but what the last week has shown us is that they lack experience, and that they are beatable. It could be a tough few weeks for City ahead, while Liverpool will be fancying their chances against any team that they come up against. 

Roma 3 vs. 0 Barcelona (4-4)

I feel vindicated. If a neutral watched the round of 16 legs between Chelsea and Barcelona, he or she would not deny that Chelsea lost due to poor finishing, bad luck, and Messi’s desire to get one over the team from London. The first leg score of 4-1 in Rome was more than flattering to Barcelona as mistakes and poor finishing by Roma again gave them the advantage. 

Roma needed to score 3 without reply to qualify for the semi’s, and Roma scored 3 without reply to qualify for the semi’s. It was one of those nights for Roma where they gave a near perfect performance and where Barca never really looked like they would score. A goal in the 6th minute by Edin Dzeko set up Roma for the comeback, and while Barca kept them out for the rest of the second half, although they continued to attack. 

Unlike City, Roma started the second half in the same fashion that they played the first half and in the 58th minute Dzeko was able to get a penalty after good centre forward play in the box. De Rossi hammered the ball into the net leaving Roma one goal away from turning the tie on its head. That goal came in the 82nd minute as Manolas scored a magnificent header to send Roma to the semi’s. 

There is no doubt that Barca are going to win La Liga and they have literally gone undefeated domestically. In Europe Barca have been suspect and in the last few weeks Messi has rescued Barcelona on multiple occasions. Messi did not show up in Rome and Roma tore Barcelona apart. They might be undefeated but this Barcelona team can not be compared to the great sides that came in the past. 

Roma much like Liverpool have vanquished one of the favourites for this season and no one will want to play them over two legs. 

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