European Champions League Roundup Feb. 24

The European Champions League tournament’s round-of-16 knockout stage continued on Tuesday, Feb. 24 with games on two fronts. Manchester City of the English Premier League hosted Barcelona of the Spanish La Liga and Italian Serie A champions Juventus hosted Borussia Dortmund of the German Bundesliga.

In Turin, 22-year-old Alvaro Morata of Spain scored once and set up the other goal in Juventus’ victory. Carlos Tevez of Argentina scored in the 13th minute and German international striker Marco Reus leveled the score five minutes later with an important away goal to keep Dortmund alive in the tie. However, Morata bagged the winner just two minutes before halftime. The second leg will take place in Germany in three week’s time at the Westfalenstadion.

At the Etihad Stadium in Manchester, Man City and Barcelona were going at it again for the second year in a row in the knockout stage. The Spanish club were 4-1 winners on aggregate last season with a 2-0 win at the Etihad and a 2-1 triumph at Cam Nou. Barcelona came out firing on all cylinders as ex Liverpool striker Luis Suarez of Uruguay opened the scoring after just 14 minutes. He then scored the game winner in the 30th to give his side a 20-0 halftime lead.

Man City attempted a comeback in the second half and got the job half done when Argentine international striker Sergio Aguero put them on the board after 69 minutes. All hopes were dashed though just five minutes later when French international left-back Gael Clichy was sent off for a second yellow card. Clichy was given it after a late tackle on Dani Alves. Barcelona had a glorious opportunity to make it 3-1 with the last kick of the game when Lionel Messi was awarded a penalty after Pablo Zabaleta too him down in the box.

Messi took the shot himself, but City’s English international goaltender Joe Hart guessed right and made a fine save. The ball bounced back into the air though and Messi raced in to head in the rebound, but he sent it wide of the gaping net. City will meet Barcelona at Cam Nou on March 18th for the second leg.

photo-Rex Features