Champions League: Barcelona and Shakhtar through

Messi (again). Barcelona score all four goals at home against Arsenal, unlucky to lose Van Persie with a very dubious decision. Shakhtar Donetsk prove why Mircea Lucescu is a brilliant coach.

Barcelona 3 Arsenal FC 1 (Aggregate 4-3)

Goals by Messi (who else?) on 45+3' and 71' (penalty) and Xavi Hernández on 69' for the home team; Busquets scored an own goal in Arsenal's favour on 53'. Barcelona go through to the last eight.

Next Friday the name of Barcelona FC will enter the draw instead of Arsenal, unlucky to see Robin van Persie sent off after 56 minutes in a dubious and apparently hasty decision by the referee who expected him to hear a whistle above 95,000 voices from several metres away. 11 against 11, Arsenal would have had a far better chance but...that's football.

At the end of the game, the statistics speak very loudly for Barça: 3 goals against 1, 10 attempts on goal against zero, seven attempts off target against zero, 5 corners against 2 and 68% possession against 32%.

Shakhtar Donetsk 3 Roma 0 (Aggregate 6-2)

43610.jpegGoals by Willian on 18' and 58' and Eduardo (sub.) on 87' buried Roma who had lost the first leg at home by 2-3. The Ukrainian team has not lost at home since 2009. Mircea Lucescu's team won categorically against AS Roma; despite the score line it was a good game of football. The Ukrainian team had 10 shots, 6 on target and 4 off, while the Italians had eight (3:5). The home team had the advantage in corners (7:4). The home team also had the advantage in possession of the ball, 56% to 44%

Aleksei Federov



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Author`s name Timothy Bancroft-Hinchey