Barcelona legends humiliate Paris Saint-Germain - media reaction
Barcelona players woke up on Thursday morning to headlines praising their heroics after an historic night that saw them beat Paris Saint Germain 6-1 at the Camp Nou to overturn a 4-0 deficit and reach the Champions League quarterfinals.
The five-time European champions were on the brink of exiting the competition after Edinson Cavani's strike in the 62nd minute left Barca needing to score three more goals to progress.
They did so as Brazilian forward Neymar scored twice before setting up Sergio Roberto to struck the winner at the death to knock PSG out of Europe, 6-5 on aggregate.
The country's media, which had been highly critical of Barca after last month's 4-0 humiliation in Paris, was euphoric about coach Luis Enrique's team -- only Madrid-based AS dwelled on referee Deniz Aytekin's performance, pointing to his "home bias calls" that proved "crucial" for Barca's stunning comeback.
The French media, meanwhile, was heavily critical of PSG's performance.
El Mundo Deportivo: Heroes
La portada del diario Mundo Deportivo de mañana... HÉROES. pic.twitter.com/rLHda8nOdm- El 10 (@el10blaugrana) March 9, 2017
Wednesday, March 8, 2017.
Luis Enrique (coach)
96,290 spectators at the Camp Nou.
These heroes beat Paris Saint Germain 6-1, made millions of barcelonistas happy and managed for FC Barcelona to make history by becoming the only side to have overturned a 4-0 deficit in a Champions League tie.
Cillessen, Alba, Digne and Alcacer cheered from the bench. Mathieu, Denis and Masip were in the stands. In the presidential box, Josep Maria Bartomeu. In this space only heroes fit.
Diario Sport: You are legends
Headline on front of the Catalan daily Sport. "You're all Legends." Every player got 10/10. pic.twitter.com/5rElsR6w7n- Andy Mitten (@AndyMitten) March 9, 2017
Barca once again enters the history of world football. The best generation of footballers that our eyes have witnessed wrote one of the most beautiful, exciting and electric pages in all European competitions and achieved the last feat that they needed to conquer.
The fans at the Camp Nou, behind their team and and all the Barcelona fans around the world, exploded with joy after Sergi Roberto's incredible goal that did football justice. Barca won simply because they deserved it, and they deserved to win because they believed it was possible. The team came out of the changing room convinced that the impossible was possible, and the world fell apart for PSG.
The day in which Messi was not at his best, Neymar carried the weight of his team's attacking responsibility. He didn't limit himself to playing on the left but appeared in every possible attacking zone to surpass with his speed and powerful strike a PSG side that bent their knees to the Brazilian striker's best version. After a game that will give plenty to talk about, Neymar not only achieved his team's passage to the quarterfinals of the Champions League but has successfully settled in the pinnacle of football.
The Brazilian can now look in the eyes of Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo, there is no doubt whatsoever that he is a firm candidate for the Ballon d'Or.
AS: A comeback with qualms
Tremendous finish, those who attended the Camp Nou will hold on to it forever. It's true that it needed for the referee to give an non-existent penalty that put them 5-1 up and opened the door for the feat. Before that, the referee had waved off a Mascherano penalty on Di Maria...He [the referee] had already ignored a handball by Mascherano in the area in the first half that had generated doubts. Between the two penalties that he gave and two that he didn't give on the opposite end, the home bias by the German [referee] Deniz Aytekin proved decisive.
Paris Saint-Germain made history yesterday evening. And wrote one of its most humiliating pages during an evening that should never have gotten away from them. Here they are out of the Champions League before spring has even started, knocked out by a Barca which has nothing of an ogre about them, and become the first club eliminated from European competition having won the first leg 4-0.
Le Parisien: Will PSG recover from this?
There was a funereal atmosphere around PSG when they left the Camp Nou. All the same, they have to quickly put this disappointment behind them otherwise they risk turning the catastrophe into a split. The castaways of Barcelona are off on Thursday. They will have the day to take stock of the vertigo that this improbable Barcelona soiree provoked.
France Football: PSG fall from very, very high up
They had assured us before the game: despite the very big scoreline in the first leg, the Parisians weren't counting on coming to the Camp Nou to defend. Even so, that's what they did from the start of the game. The problem is that they did it very badly. Grouped together in their own final third and deprived of the ball by an opponent who was waiting just for that, they gave their opponents the stick with which to beat them.
Adriana Garcia and Ian Holyman contributed to this report.
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