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Feb 20, 2013

Barca have Milan mountain to climb

Goals from Kevin-Prince Boateng and Sulley Muntari secured AC Milan a deserved 2-0 win in the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie against Barcelona to leave the Liga giants with a mountain to climb.

• Delighted Allegri hails Milan

Boateng broke the deadlock on 56 minutes at San Siro with a smart finish on the turn, as Barca appealed in vain for a handball in the build-up.

And Milan claimed a second with nine minutes left on the clock when Stephan El Shaarawy helped a ball onto Muntari, who fired past goalkeeper Victor Valdes.

The home side continued to keep Barca at bay to clinch what could prove to be a decisive result ahead of the second leg at Camp Nou on March 12.

Elsewhere, Jermaine Jones' strike in the last minute of the first half gave Schalke a slight advantage as they drew 1-1 at Galatasaray .

Jones calmly slotted home after Jefferson Farfan had squared the ball to him to give the German side a vital draw at the Turk Telekom Arena, although Schalke's goalscorer will miss the second leg after picking up a booking.

Burak Yilmaz had earlier put Gala in front with a piece of individual brilliance but they could not extend their lead in a breathtaking first-half in which both teams failed to convert several glorious opportunities.

The second half was decidedly less open, although Yilmaz nearly gave the hosts a slender lead heading into the second leg but could only fire wide of the target.

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