April 4, 2020

Lionel Messi Scores, Makes UCL History as Barcelona Top Slavia Prague 2-1

TIMOTHY RAPP

OCTOBER 24, 2019

Barcelona's Lionel Messi, second left, celebrates with teammates after scoring his side's opening goal during the Champions League group F soccer match between Slavia Praha and FC Barcelona at the Sinobo stadium in Prague, Czech Republic, Wednesday, Oct. 23, 2019. (AP Photo/Petr David Josek)
Petr David Josek/Associated Press

Make it 33 teams that have felt Lionel Messi‘s wrath in Champions League football.

Barcelona’s superstar was the main man yet again on Wednesday, leading the Catalan side with a goal in the club’s 2-1 victory over Slavia Praha. He is now tied with Cristiano Ronaldo and Raul with goals against 33 different clubs in UEFA’s premier competition.

It wasn’t the only bit of history Messi made on the night:

Jan Boril scored the lone goal for Slavia, while a Peter Olayinka own-goal in the 57th minute proved to be the decisive moment.

It only took Messi three minutes to get Barca on the board. After a poor turnover from Slavia Praha in their own half, Arthur found the ball in space on the edge of the box. After cutting back inside he played a low cross into the path of Messi, who finished first-time:

That was the lone tally in the first half, though things heated up in the second 45.

Give Slavia Praha credit—they weren’t intimidated by their star-laden opponents, even equalizing in the 50th minute behind Boril after the home side broke down Barcelona’s defense on a quick-hitting long ball to Lukas Masopust. He neatly found the charging Boril in the box, who quickly poked a powerful shot past Marc-Andre ter Stegen:

It was a bit harsh on the Czech side, who made a good account of themselves in the loss. Granted, Barcelona did leave several chances wanting, but Slavia created their own opportunities as well, seeming to feed off the crowd as they pressured Barca in the second half. 

And Slavia had some tantalizing chances in stoppage time, including several corners. In the end, though, Barca was too good for the home side to overcome. 

Overall, Barcelona weren’t terribly convincing. They won the possession battle but only held 52 percent overall, per Goal.com, and had less shots on target than the home side (9-7 in favor of Slavia). It wasn’t the level of dominance that would be expected from Barca, though they did enough to escape with a victory.

The victory kept Barcelona alone atop the Group F table with seven points, with Inter Milan (four points), Borussia Dortmund (four points) and Slavia Praha (one point) playing catch-up. 

from: https://bleacherreport.com/articles/2859523-lionel-messi-scores-makes-ucl-history-as-barcelona-top-slavia-prague-2-1

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