The Nigerian Online Newspaper

Juve end Barca’s Champions League dream

Juventus have booked their spot in the semi-finals of the Champions League after drawing 0-0 with Barcelona in the second leg of their quarter-final at Camp Nou on Wednesday night.
The Italian champions recorded a 3-0 victory in the first leg on home soil last week, and a goalless draw in the return fixture has seen them comfortably book their spot in the final four of the competition.
Both teams had opportunities in the 15th minute during an end-to-end period of the match, but Rakitic struck one over the Juventus crossbar from a dangerous position, before Cuadrado missed the target down the other end of the field as the visitors continued to threaten an away goal.
Messi had a glorious chance – the best of the first period – to send Barcelona ahead in the 19th minute when he was allowed the freedom of the Juventus box, but the Argentine somehow sent his low effort wide of Gianluigi Buffon’s post.
Neymar and Roberto then took it in turns to have attempts for the Spanish champions, although neither could hit the target as a brilliant opening 23 minutes somehow produced no goals.
Enrique resisted the temptation to make any changes at the interval, despite the fact that his team needed to score at least three times in the second period to stand a chance of staying in the competition.
Cuadrado had a wonderful chance to send Juventus ahead on the night in the 50th minute when a brilliant pass from Higuain released the Colombian international, but his effort was just wide of the far post, before Neymar missed the target with a powerful effort down the other end.
Dancing feet from Messi then created another opportunity for the home side, but the Argentine sent his effort into the stands, before Ter Stegen was forced to keep out a near-post strike from Cuadrado as the end-to-end nature of the match continued.
Messi again came close in the 56th minute after working more space in a forward position, but the Argentine’s effort was deflected just wide of the far post, before the forward missed the crossbar with a free kick in a dangerous position.
Messi had another opportunity in the 67th minute after Buffon had fumbled a high ball, but the 29-year-old turned his volley over the crossbar as Barcelona passed up another chance to breach the Juventus defence, before Roberto saw his curling effort just miss the far post.
Gerard Pique moved into a centre-forward position for Barcelona in the final 10 minutes, and the Spanish champions left themselves exposed in a defensive position as they desperately searched for some late goals.
Mario Lemina came close to registering for Juventus late on to secure what would have been a famous win at Camp Nou, but it mattered little in terms of the tie as the Italian giants booked their spot in the semi-finals of the competition alongside Atletico Madrid, Real Madrid and AS Monaco.