Featured Matches
Previous
Manchester City
Liverpool
(1) 2
(3) 2
FT-Pens
Game Details
Bayern Munich
Guadalajara
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Brighton & Hove Albion
Southampton
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
AS Trencin
Hull City
0
0
LIVE 0'
Leg 1
Game Details
Mlada Boleslav
Lyon
0
0
LIVE 0'
Leg 1
Game Details
Real Sociedad
Aberdeen
6:30 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Shakhter Karagandy
Hajduk Split
4
2
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Astana 1964
AIK Solna
1
1
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Neftchi Baku PFC
Chikhura Sachkhere
0
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Omonia Nicosia
Metalurg
3
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
FK Astra Giurgiu
Liberec
3
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Ruch Chorzow
Esbjerg FB
0
0
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Dinamo Moscow
Hapoel Kiryat Shmona
1
1
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Elfsborg
FH Hafnarfjordur
4
1
FT
Leg 1
Game Details
Karabükspor
Rosenborg
5:00 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Mlada Boleslav
Lyon
0
0
LIVE 0'
Leg 1
Game Details
AS Trencin
Hull City
0
0
LIVE 0'
Leg 1
Game Details
Brommapojkarna
Torino
5:00 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
PSV Eindhoven
St. Pölten
1
0
LIVE 86'
Leg 1
Game Details
Dinamo Minsk
CFR Cluj-Napoca
5:00 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
IFK Goteborg
Rio Ave
5:00 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
FC Zorya Luhansk
Molde
5:30 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
BSC Young Boys
Ermis Aradippou
5:30 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
RNK Split
FC Chornomorets Odessa
6:00 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
S.V. Zulte Waregem
Shakhter Soligorsk
6:00 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Petrolul Ploiesti
Viktoria Plzen
6:00 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Víkingur Gøta
Rijeka
6:00 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Mainz
Asteras Tripolis
0
0
LIVE 11'
Leg 1
Game Details
Diosgyor VTK
Kuban Krasnodar
6:30 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Stjarnan
Lech Poznan
6:30 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
FK Sarajevo
Atromitos
6:30 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Real Sociedad
Aberdeen
6:30 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Club Brugge
Brøndby
6:30 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
St Johnstone
FC Spartak Trnava
6:45 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
SV Grödig Amateure
Zimbru Chisinau
7:05 PM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Brighton & Hove Albion
Southampton
6:45 PM GMT
Game Details
Bayern Munich
Guadalajara
12:00 AM GMT
Game Details
Londrina
Santos FC
12:00 AM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Coritiba FBC
Paysandu SC
12:00 AM GMT
Leg 1
Game Details
Unión Comercio
Sport Huancayo
3
0
FT
Game Details
Melgar
San Martin
6:15 PM GMT
Game Details
Sporting Cristal
León de Huánuco
8:30 PM GMT
Game Details
Sky Blue FC
Western New York Flash
11:00 PM GMT
Game Details
Next
Mar 12, 2013

Allegri praises 'world's best' Barca

AC Milan coach Massimiliano Allegri has praised Barcelona as the "strongest side in the world" after his side were knocked out of the Champions League with a 4-0 defeat to the Catalan giants.

• Delaney: Barca stage epic comeback
• Blog: Barca battering for Milan

Allegri opted for a defensive formation as the Rossoneri attempted to hold on to their 2-0 first leg lead, but they were undone by a Lionel Messi brace and goals to David Villa and Jordi Alba.

The Milan boss admitted his men required a slice of luck to overcome Barca but believes his side provided enough resistance to show positive signs.

"Luck was with us in the first leg with that deflection into Boateng's path, this time it went against us with Niang hitting the upright," he said. "It's only normal that this will now be painted as a disaster, but when you face a Barcelona side like this it's very difficult. They knew they had to score at least three, so poured pressure on from the start.

"After 30 minutes we played better and they got a little tired, as they couldn't keep that tempo up. Unfortunately, we came so close and did everything we could.

"Barcelona are the strongest side in the world. Messi and Iniesta kept dribbling with such cool heads in stoppages, Xavi was so sharp. I have to praise my lads for not giving up to the very end, as they could've let their heads drop."

Allegri believes the fight shown by Milan proves they have improved after a dismal start to the season.

"Tonight Barcelona were extraordinary, especially in the first 30 minutes," Allegri said. "Despite all that pressure, they had few real chances. In the first half we had a lot of problems emerging from our half, as they were pressing us and forcing errors.

"Of course qualification was always going to be a matter of centimentres. We hit the upright with Niang, then conceded with Messi.

"This defeat is disappointing for the club, the fans and the lads, as they gave their all and hoped to achieve something remarkable. Tonight it was tough against this Barcelona, yet we kept it open to the end and when 3-0 down had some chances that could've gone better.

"This team needs to grow and had five players who were in their first Champions league campaign. It will be useful experience. On Sunday we have Palermo and our objective right now is to get back into the tournament next season. This game must help everyone to grow, we knew there were difficulties and it's a shame."

Milan's tactics were questioned following the game, with 18-year-old Niang the focal point of scrutiny aimed at Allegri. But Milan were force to deal with a surprising change from Barca as Villa made a rare start and Allegri insists he made the right decisions in attack.

"David Villa's position caused us a lot of problems," he said. "The passing was also so quick that we had to defend a little deeper. Despite it all, we had a great chance to get the away goal and even the equaliser. Against great champions, it's always difficult to qualify, even after the first leg. It's a shame we tended to give Barcelona opportunities by failing to clear the ball properly.

"In order to play these games, you need legs and I made these choices. If Niang had scored, my choice would've been praised. We're upset, but don't have much time to even think about it, as on Sunday we face Palermo and our position in Serie A is the most important thing."

Milan captain Massimo Ambrosini conceded the Rossoneri were simply outplayed and must now turn their attention to securing a place in next year's competition.

"It's the end of a dream. We were not up to it tonight. We suffered from the start and it wasn't the performance we needed," he said.

"It is a learning experience, one we gladly would've avoided. I can only hope it can serve us well for the future. Now our objective is to get back into the competition."

Comments

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment, and may be used on ESPN's media platforms. Learn more.