Lisbon- German giants Bayern Munich thrashed European heavyweights FC Barcelona by 8-2! Munich has now secured a coveted Champions League semi-final spot.
Thomas Müller’s began the soon-to-be rout with a left-footed goal in just the fourth minute. But, in the 7th minute, David Alaba’s own goal ignited some hope for the Spanish side and their supporters. Alas for them, Perisic scored in the 21st minute. Bayern then went on to score two more goals courtesy of Gnabry (27′) and Müller (31’) to become the fastest team to score four goals in a CL knockout match.
Except for Suárez’s 57th-minute goal, there was barely any cherishing moment for Barcelona. Through Kimmich’s 63rd-minute goal, Bayern continued tearing down Barca defense. Bayern striker Lewandowski (82’) headed his 14th Champions League goal in just last 8 games and became the first player to score in eight or more consecutive CL games since Cristiano Ronaldo in 2018 (11 games). Two last-gasp goals from Coutinho, who was on loan from Barcelona, made Bayern the first side to score 8 goals in the Champions League knockout game.
This was Barca’s first six-goal defeat after their 6-0 loss to Espanyol in 1951. Barca had previously conceded 8 goals, but that was 74 years in the form of 8-0 defeat to Sevilla.
“Horrible game. Terrible feeling. Embarrassing. That’s the word. It’s really tough this,” Barcelona’s defender Piqué said after the 90-min of humiliation. “I hope it serves a purpose. It’s time to reflect. The club needs changes. Not just the coach or the players. I don’t want to single anyone out. It needs changes…”
Such has been the stature of the knockout between Bayern and Barcelona that the side which has won the last three knockout ties has gone on to win the title.
Barcelona and Bayern are evenly poised with five CL titles each, but Bayern looks extremely strong as they aim for the 6th.
Thomas Muller, who had sealed the game within half an hour with his double was deservedly declared the Man of the Match.
The winner of the Manchester City vs Lyon will face Bayern Munich for the second semifinal on Thursday, August 20th.
As a side note, next week’s semifinals will be the first ones not to feature either Cristiano Ronaldo or Leonel Messi since 2005/06. That says something about both of these players but also of the four teams vying for this coveted European trophy that determines both collectively and oftentimes individually who is the “best ever” (until next year’s tournament)!