The quest for the UEFA Champions League title, UCL, turned sour for the Barcelona team as they became stepping stone for Bayern Munich to reach the Semi final.
Barça in a face off with the German club on Friday went home with a disgraceful defeat of 8-2 in favor of Bayern Munich.
Thomas Mueller scored twice for a rampant Bayern, who led 4-1 after 31 astonishing minutes, as Lionel Messi and his team mates were condemned to a thrashing that felt like the end of an era for the illustrious Catalan club.
Both teams have been crowned European champions five times. But, while Bayern look to have a real chance of added a sixth title next week, Barca are clearly facing major reconstruction work and it remains to be seen how many of those involved in this debacle will survive at the club.
The scoreline recalled Germany’s 7-1 win over Brazil in the 2014 World Cup, a game where Bayern coach Hansi Flick was on the bench as the national team’s assistant coach.
Barça; The Stepping Stone of Bayern Towards the UCL Title
It began with Bayern grabbing a fourth-minute lead when Mueller collected Ivan Perisic’s cross from the left and played a clever one-two with Robert Lewandowski before drilling home.
However, the next three minutes saw an home goal conceded by David Alaba while trying to save a super long kick by Jordi Alba.
Another attempt by Barça came through a goal-bound Luis Suarez and was quickly foiled by the Bayern goal keeper, Manuel Neuer but a cross-shot from Messi through the right drifted through the area and struck the post.
But just as Barca seemed to have established themselves, the Germans regained their lead in the 21st minute — Serge Gnabry fed Perisic on the left and the Croatian glanced up to see his options before drilling past Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
Bayern then added the third as Barca’s defence was opened up again with ease. Thiago Alcantara was given plenty of space in midfield to find Leon Goretzka whose superb ball picked out Gnabry, who had got behind Lenglet and then made no mistake with the finish.
Flick’s side were running riot and it got worse for Barca when a low cross from Joshua Kimmich was turned in at the near post by Mueller — another goal of ruthless simplicity making it 4-1 at the break.
The Spaniards desperately needed to find a way to shift the momentum after the break and Suarez, one of the few Barca players to emerge with any credit from the encounter, provided a route back into the game with a fine strike, in the 57th minute.
Jordi Alba found Suarez on the edge of the box and the Uruguayan jinked passed Jerome Boateng before blasting home.
But Bayern were in no mood to turn down the heat and six minutes later they restored their three goal advantage thanks to some outstanding work from their Canadian 19-year-old boy Alphonso Davies.
The left back dribbled in from the flank, danced past Nelson Semedo to get to the byline and then pulled the ball back to fellow full back Kimmich to slot home and make it 5-2.
Somehow Bayern had managed to score five goals without their prolific striker Robert Lewandowski, who had scored in his previous seven Champions League matches – however, eight minutes from the end, the Pole put that right.
Substitute Philippe Coutinho, who is on loan at the German club from Barca, floated over a cross from the left which Lewandowski firmly headed home at the back post.
To add insult to the already painful injury, Coutinho then scored two more before the end, as Barcelona fell apart in unimaginable fashion to the brilliance of the Bavarians.
With the unimaginable defeat of the Spanish champion, the German club will be facing off with either Manchester City or Olympique Lyonnais, which will be decided after their play off on Saturday.
It is also important to note that Bayern Munich last won Europe’s biggest prize in 2013, and right now, they’re hoping to lift the 2020 edition of the UEFA Champions League cup.
Photo Credit: Super Sport