Sublime Messi inspires Barca to first leg win
Two goals from Barcelona talisman Lionel Messi, including an unstoppable free-kick, and a Luis Suarez strike gave Barcelona a three-goal advantage going into the second leg.
Liverpool played much better than the score line suggested and had their chances.
Jurgen Klopp’s side were particularly unfortunate in the fourth minute as referee Björn Kuipers denied Liverpool a penalty when Sadio Mane was bundled to the floor by Gerard Piqué.
Barcelona didn’t take long to make the breakthrough as Jordi Alba curled a beautiful ball into the box that Luis Suárez slid onto and finished beyond Alisson.
The Uruguayan celebrated ecstatically against his former club much to the annoyance of the Liverpool fans who once adored him.
Liverpool pressed forward as Mane blazed over and James Milner’s stinging drive was well saved as the hosts led at half-time.
In 52nd minute, Mohamad Salah struck a fine low effort that was curling into the bottom corner but for a top drawer save from Marc-André ter Stegen.
Barcelona added a second as Suárez struck the bar but Messi was on hand to walk the ball into the net.
A stunning 81st minute free-kick from the left boot of the Argentinian star gave the Catalans a comfortable three-goal cushion.
A late chance for Liverpool saw Bobby Firmino’s effort cleared off the line and Salah’s rebound cannoned off the bar as the ball refused to go in for Liverpool.
Ousmane Dembélé’s last-minute effort was easily saved by Alisson as the full-time whistle sounded giving Liverpool a mountain to climb going into next week’s second leg.
Suarez 26, Messi 75, 82
Competition: Champions League
Date: Wednesday 1st May 2019
Venue: Nou Camp
Man of the Match: Lionel Messi
James Spencer, Thoughts from the Stands
Hi my name is James Spencer and I am a huge Liverpool fan since I was a small boy!
Steven Gerrard was my favourite player growing up and I watched all the fantastic finals that Liverpool won under Houllier and Benitez! I also liked Jerzy Dudek, Sami Hyypia, Luis Garcia and Xabi Alonso.
Here are our current remaining fixtures:
Saturday 4th May
Newcastle United 19:45 Liverpool – Live On BT Sport
Tuesday 7th May
UEFA Champions League
Liverpool 20:00 Barcelona – Live On BT Sport
Sunday 12th May
Liverpool 15:00 Wolverhampton Wanderers – Live On Sky