Barcelona showed their faces on Wednesday evening in their Champions League last 16 second leg against Paris Saint-Germain, but ultimately crashed out of Europe’s premier competition for what they did wrong according to Marca. After all, a 5-2 aggregate defeat doesn’t fall from the sky.
The Catalans first leg performance at Camp Nou, when they took a 4-1 beating at the hands of PSG, wasn’t an isolated experience in this season’s European campaign. They also lost leadership of their group at the last moment to Juventus, a side whose quality is also being called into question in the wake of their last 16 exit to Porto. Regarding the tie with PSG, they simply forgot that the tie was 180 minutes, and allowed a second half capitulation to turn a tough situation into a nigh-impossible one.
Ronald Koeman’s men have also been marked by their lack of efficacy in the final third, lacking a striker in the mould of Luis Suarez, who they let join Atletico Madrid. They’ll live to rue Lionel Messi’s missed penalty in Paris that would have given real hope to a remontada, while they themselves gifted the opposition chances like Clement Lenglet’s conceded penalty.
Barcelona have also been marked this season by a lack of consistency in that vital position at the heart of defence, evidenced by his use of midfielder Frenkie de Jong as a centre-back in Paris. This is partly down to injuries, but also down to Koeman not trusting the likes of Samuel Umtiti. Finally, and perhaps most significantly, Barcelona didn’t protect their home patch. Their exit was secured by defeats against Juventus and PSG, both of which took place at Camp Nou.