Barça defeated by GunnersFebruary 17, 2011
Barcelona took a few minutes to settle into the game until a few minutes into the game Messi took his first opportunity of the match. Although the ball went wide, the players seemed to find their stride afterwards, perhaps gaining some confidence. Possession from then on was high and Barça had a few unsuccessful attempts at the Arsenal goal. However, in the 26th minutes a Messi assist to Villa resulted in the first goal of the match.
A few minutes later Messi appeared to have scored again. Unfortunately it was judged to be offside, although replays would suggest it should have been allowed; they would also seem to suggest an Arsenal handball.
After the break neither team seemed to be creating any real danger and the game was drifting. However, Arsenal picked up the pace again and in the 78th minute Van Persie managed to put the ball past Valdes; five minutes later Arshavin scored a second for Arsenal.
Despite some great play in the last couple of minutes, Barça failed to claw back a goal to equalise, leaving the final score 2-1 to Arsenal. However, all is not lost – the Gunners visit the Nou Camp next month and all Barça needs is a 1-0 win to go through.
0-1 Villa (min 26)
1-1 Van Persie (min 78)
2-1 Arshavin (min 83)