Barcelo cruise into CL semis

Barcelo, April 22: Spanish football club Barcelo booked their place in the semifils of the Champions League for the seventh time in eight years as they defeated Paris Saint Germain (PSG) 2-0 to secure a 5-1 win on aggregate.

Neymar was the hero of the Tuesday night with two first half goals as Barcelo enjoyed a relatively tranquil night at Camp Nou here.

Despite the 3-1 win in the first leg and a difficult game next weekend, Barcelo coach Luis Enrique made no concessions to try and conserve tired legs and played what is probably his strongest side with Lionel Messi, Neymar, Luis Suarez and Ivan Rakitic.

Zlatan Ibrahimovoch was back for PSG to face his former club while Marco Verratti was also able to provide more control to the French side's midfield.

One player who didn't show control was PSG central defender David Luiz, who was booked for challenging with his foot up in the first foul of the game.

Barcelo opened the scoring in the 14th minute, virtually their first attack. Andres Iniesta collected the ball in his own half, ghosted past two players in midfield and threaded the ball for Neymar to round the keeper and slide the ball into the net.

The goal clearly hurt the French side and it was also soon clear that it was going to be a good night for Barcelo. The passes found their target, the pressing was aggressive and movements were fluid as their rivals suffered.

It was no surprise when Neymar doubled the lead with a header five minutes from the break after good work from Dani Alves down the right wing.

With his side up 5-1 on aggregate at the break, Enrique decided to rest Iniesta for Xavi Herndez and with the PSG needing to score four goals to qualify, 10 minutes later Sergi Roberto replaced Busquets. IANS

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