Barcelona came up short against Paris Saint-Germain Wednesday as Lionel Messi missed a penalty late to allow for PSG to move on to the Champions League quarterfinals. PSG won 1-1 Wednesday in Leg 2, but won 5-2 in aggregate.
“We suffered a lot in the first half, and psychologically it was a test for us,” Messi said after the match. “I gathered that the past was something that was talked about a lot here,” he told reporters after the game. “We were better in the second half, we were more competitive.”
Messi did have a world-class goal that was impossible to stop from 25-yards out earlier in the half.
“He’s been sensational in the first half, but this goal from Messi is something special,” former Barcelona player Gary Lineker said during the match on social media.
He did, however come up short at the end of the first half as he missed a penalty. As such, the match ended 1-1, with Mauricio Pochettino’s side ecstatic to survive and move forward in the tournament.
“We suffered a lot in the first half, and psychologically it was a test for us,” Pochettino said. “I gathered that the past was something that was talked about a lot here. We were better in the second half, we were more competitive.”
This is the first time in 14 years that Barcelona has failed to reach the Champions League quarterfinals, and the first time since 2005 that neither Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo have been present in the round-of-16. Juventus came up short vs Porto on Tuesday.
Messi’s current contract with Barcelona is set to expire at the end of the current season, making him potentially the most coveted free agent in sport history.