Following Man United’s 1-0 home defeat to Barcelona last week, it was always going to be difficult for them to overturn the deficit. Despite United’s heroics in Paris in the previous round, lightning unfortunately didn’t strike twice and United succumbed to a 3-0 loss to the Catalan club.
Leo Messi (£5.01) was once again at his majestic best and the Argentine grabbed a quick-fire brace in the first half to put the tie beyond doubt. Messi has continued his imperious form and his double ensured another impressive Match Day Score of 274 points. This was enough to secure Messi with the overall best score, whilst he also topped the Media Rankings with a massive haul of 2460 points! On the back of his performance, the Argentine also looks set to secure the Media Dividends for a second day in a row today.
— UEFA Champions League (@ChampionsLeague) April 16, 2019
Interestingly, Messi has found himself falling in value and despite his consistently high performances; he has dropped by 30p in the last 24 hours. It was a similar situation for Messi’s long term sporting rival Cristiano Ronaldo (£2.22) who is down 32p since Juventus crashed out of the quarter finals to Ajax. At least Messi will have the Champions League semi-finals to once again showcase his worth to traders.
In the second half, Philipe Coutinho (£1.78) smashed in a stunning long range effort proving that he still has plenty left in the locker. It’s been a season of uncertainty for Coutinho this year, as the Brazilian has been unable to nail down a starting spot at Camp Nou. Having started only 19 games (and come off the bench 11 times) in the league, the media have been quick to suggest that all may not be right with Coutinho. There have suggestions over recent weeks that Coutinho (and Barcelona) may be open to a move back to the Premier League and Man United have been touted as a possible destination. With this in mind, his wonder strike last night will certainly have given the United hierarchy some serious food for thought!
As Barcelona saw out the game and secured the clean sheet, Jordi Alba (£0.68) was able to take the defensive dividends with a decent score of 172. But with a possible semi-final against Liverpool on the horizon, he will surely do well to keep another clean sheet in the next round!
With one half of the Champions League fixtures completed, all eyes will now turn to the 4 remaining clubs. Barcelona are currently many people’s favourites to lift the coveted trophy and on the evidence of their 4-0 aggregate victory, it’s easy to see why!