Lyon seize Barcelona to a goalless draw at
Barcelona laboured to a fourth draw in five matches this month, with Lionel Messi and co. held to a 0-0 draw in the first leg of their Champions League last 16 tie against Lyon.
Both sides had chances to win the match, with the two goalkeepers Marc-Andre ter Stegen and Anthony Lopes the standout performers. It was the former who prevented Lyon from making the breakthrough in the first half, tipping a shot from Martin Terrier on to the crossbar.
Barcelona improved in the second half, with Luis Suarez presented with a series of opportunities to score an away goal. However, Lyon held firm to give themselves a chance of making the Champions League quarter-finals.
Herein lies the beauty, or drawback, of the away goals rule. Conventional thought dictates that a draw in the away leg should suit the away team. However, an away goal at Camp Nou for Lyon now carries huge worth. So who will be happier with a goalless first leg result – Lyon or Barcelona? There’s an argument to be made on both sides. Lyon made chances here and they will likely make chances in the return leg too.
This was a night for the goalkeepers to shine. In the first half, it was Ter Stegen who made a couple of stops to prevent Lyon from taking the lead, with his diving save on to the bar from Terrier the highlight reel moment. However, over the full 90 minutes it was Lopes who did the most to ensure there would be no breakthrough in this Champions League last 16 first leg. The Portuguese keeper was solid throughout.
Liverpool hold down Bayern Munish to a goalless draw
Clear-cut chances were at a premium at both ends as two evenly-matched teams duked it out, meaning a place in the quarter-finals remains very much up for grabs when they meet again at the Allianz Arena in three weeks’ time.
Read on for five talking points that emerged from an engrossing first leg…
With Virgil van Dijk suspended and Dejan Lovren ruled out by injury along with Joe Gomez, Jürgen Klopp partnered Joel Matip with Fabinho at centre-back.
That the Brazilian, a midfielder by trade, looked anything-but out of place while up against a striker of the class of Robert Lewandowski in an unfamiliar role speaks volumes for his ability and game intelligence.
No Liverpool player made more clearances than the 25-year-old (three), while one of his two tackles – a clean, sliding effort to dispossess Lewandowski as Bayern’s No.9 looked to swivel and shoot from close range – could prove pivotal to the outcome of a balanced tie.