Champions League Quarter-finals second leg, with Barca entering Olympics with a 4-1 home lead in their hands, all was looking good for them, and it was only matter of 90 mins until they go through to semis easily.
But one man, one name and an all fired up Roma squad had some other plans! Edin Dzeko, the ex-Manchester City man, who’s been hitting top form since arriving at Roma is the name all Barcelona defense will remember for quite a long time!
With 18 points clear in La Liga, Barcelona were all looking pretty good to get the treble with their new coach Valverde, but their recent form while being on top is worrying many Barcelona fans around the world.
Within just 6 mins into the game, Edin Dzeko headed home after beating until and Jordi Alba for the header from De Rossi’s lofted through ball, and there was nothing to Stegen could do to avoid it.
The second goal came in the 58th minute when Edin Dzeko was brought down by a desperate Gerrard Pique, which was put away by De Rossi from the penalty spot.
With just a goal away from qualifying for the semis, Roma was looking for one chance, one light to shine through and which came in the name of Kostas Manolas, who headed home in the 82nd minute to give Roma the perfect home goal, and thus qualifying them for the champions league semis.
With the aggregate score tied at 4-4 after this match, Roma goes through to the semis based on the away goal rule as they had one on their night at camp now while Barca failed to score any at Olympics today!
This failure in qualifying for the semis while they were on the top, and giving away such a huge lead, has to lead much criticism towards Barcelona’s newly appointed manager valvarade. With many fans claiming he could’ve done certain things in hope to change things around.
Among many fan’s backlashes, many, for example, argued with his substitution selection that he could’ve turned to his bench to give Barca a new hope, during the late mins, instead of choosing Dembele, who could’ve provided some threat on the wings, valvarade chose Luis Suarez, who hasn’t scored in Olympics since 2015. Another example is not putting in Paulinho, who could’ve given a tough battle in the midfield, but instead, valvarade looked on as the last mins ticked down the clock.
Barcelona looked dead for most of the match, the only first-half highlights for them were few Messi free kicks which went well over the bars. With such a performance, many would expect valvarade to give them a perfect scolding in hope to put up a fight after halftime, but surprisingly, Roma went on to score two more goals to complete their dream comeback!
Now how far will Roma go? Well, that depends on who they come up with next. Stay tuned to find out!!