DONETSK, UKRAINE - APRIL 12: Daniel Alves (L) of Barcelona battles with Willian of Shakhtar Donetsk during the UEFA Champions League Quarter Final 2nd Leg match between Shakhtar Donetsk and Barcelona at the Donbass Arena on April 12, 2011 in Donetsk, Ukraine. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)
Another game out of the way, and El Clasico beckons. But what did the Barca Blaugranes team think of the match?
This game was (unofficially) decided a week ago, but it had to be played. Shakhtar were playing for their pride and undefeated run in the Champions League, but Barcelona were again too good for them. Messi was brilliant, he scored (seriously, what got into me that I said he won't score?) and he had some fantastic runs down the middle, so just another day in the office. The Ukrainians/Brazilians played another good game, but again they missed to many chances and Valdés also had a good night. All in all, it wasn't the most entertaining game, the chances were there for both teams, but the goals were missing. Looks like we are going to the Santiago Bernabeu (again), but that is a topic for another day.
I’ve never thought I’d say this but the Shakhtar Donetsk vs. FC Barcelona game was a complete waste of time. Barca weren’t exactly dominant while Shakhtar lacked the will and spark to create anything worth mentioning. Sure, FC Barcelona had nothing to lose, at least not lose by a four-goal margin but the initial line-up was pretty strong, I was expecting more.
David Villa looks anything like in-form, to be honest, If I had my way I would drop him from the starting XI for this Sunday’s Clasico. But unfortunately Bojan is out for the rest the season and Jeffren Suarez is not likely to get much game time anyway.
Speaking of game time, Gabriel Milito has got to go. He’s not even half the player FC Barcelona bought in 2007 and If I’m not mistaken he is on a massive salary, somewhere in the neighborhood of 5,000,000 Euro, give or take a million. FC Barcelona please release Gabriel Milito, he is not FC Barcelona material at least not 2011 Milito.
The only bright side, if there was any, Lionel Messi has scored once again. He is now the sole record holder for most goals in a single season there you go (original) Ronaldo.
Not the best game ever, but an important one in which we learned a lot of the team. To go away to the Donbass and leave with such a comfortable victory is definitely the stuff of champions. More importantly, we saw the 48th goal of the season from the beyond description Messi. El Clasico awaits, and on the evidence of today, Messi could be the catalyst to any Barca victory. The defense looked solid for the first time in a long while, and with Real facing a tough game, physically, tomorrow, there could be a few twists yet before El Clasico.