Messi scores 100th Champs League goal … As Chelsea crash out

MessiLIONEL Messi scored his 100th Champions League goal as Barcelona knocked Chelsea out of the competition with a 3-0 victory (4-1 aggregate) at the Nou Camp.
Barcelona raced into the lead with Messi beating Thibaut Courtois from a tight angle after just 128 seconds before Ousmane Dembele’s brilliant finish (20) doubled the host’s advantage.
Despite the scoreline, Chelsea had their chances with Marcos Alonso denied by the post just before the break and the Spaniard had a penalty appeal turned down by referee Damir Skomina early in the second half, after going to ground under a challenge from Gerard Pique when clean through on goal.
Missed chances proved to be costly for Chelsea in the end and it was left to Messi to wrap up the tie in the 63rd minute with his landmark goal to book his side’s place in the draw for the last eight, which takes place on Friday at 11am.
Chelsea faced a difficult task before kick-off, following the 1-1 draw in the first leg at Stamford Bridge, but it was made even more difficult in just the third minute when Suarez flicked the ball into the path of Messi. The Argentine made no mistake, sliding the ball through the legs of Courtois to beat him at his near post from a tight angle for the quickest goal of his career.
It was the worst possible start for the visitors but they responded well to going a goal behind with Eden Hazard and Willian looking bright in advanced positions, however, they were further behind in the 20th minute.
At one end Samuel Umtiti was needed to make a crucial block to deny Hazard but the ball was soon at the other end as Messi nipped it away from a lunging Cesc Fabregas. Messi, one on one with Christensen, held the ball up before picking out Dembele in space and he took a touch before rifling the ball past Courtois and into the roof of the net.
Once again, Chelsea responded well and they had their moments as the first half drew to a close. Marc-Andre ter Stegen palmed Alonso’s strike away before N’Golo Kante dragged a shot wide of the far post.
Chelsea were putting Barca under pressure and the nerves were starting to build among the home fans as Dembele was forced into a last-gasp sliding tackle to deny Alonso, but it was that man Messi, who put the tie to bed.
He showed a great change of pace to burst past Cesar Azpilicueta and into the penalty area before firing through the legs of Courtois for the second time to score his 100th Champions League goal in his 123rd appearance.
No team in Europe’s big five leagues has beaten more different sides in all competitions this term than Barcelona (24 – level with Man City and Man Utd).
Barcelona have won 24 Champions League games against English clubs, more than any other side in the competition.
Chelsea have failed to progress in each of their last three last-16 ties in the Champions League (2014-15 PSG, 2015-16 PSG and 2017-18 Barcelona). In contrast, Barcelona have progressed into the quarter-finals in each of the last 11 editions of the Champions League. – Sky Sports

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