Messi, Rakitic light up Wembley as Barcelona sink Spurs

Messi, Rakitic light up Wembley as Barcelona sink Spurs

Messi, Rakitic light up Wembley as Barcelona sink Spurs

Lionel Messi, who played in a fine ball to Alba to get the move going, is now Barcelona's sole survivor from the 2005-6 Champions League campaign where Van Bommel hit that record-breaking goal, which was eventually won by Frank Rijkaard's Blaugrana charges. "We had a few problems during the game but we managed to solve them".

It is easy to blame Spurs' haphazard display on having key players out injured, but there's no doubt that had a huge impact on their fluidity at both ends of the pitch as they've started up their UCL group stage with defeats to Inter Milan and Barcelona. Although the Lilywhites' boss will take some comfort from his side's fighting spirit in the second-half.

Mauricio Pochettino certainly called it when, the day before his side met Barcelona at Wembley, the Tottenham manager admitted he could not find a solution for dealing with Lionel Messi and that he just told his players to relish the experience of facing against arguably football's greatest-ever player.

Spellbound by Messi's magic, Tottenham backed off again moments later as the striker hit the woodwork for a second time.

It was a testament to Tottenham's character that they twice scored goals through Harry Kane and Erik Lamela to give themselves hope of an unlikely draw, but Barca were always deservedly one step ahead. "In the second half, he had more space and that is hard to stop", added Pochettino.

"We had a bit of bad luck while handling the game".

Coutinho was left with a simple finish after Hugo Lloris' reckless charge out to meet Jordi Alba had left the net unguarded, and the Brazilian made no mistake to tuck away the first of the game.

Ivan Rakitic doubled their lead on 28 minutes and Spurs found themselves at the mercy of Messi, who struck the post twice before scoring a third after Kane had cut the deficit in half for Spurs.

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Powering into the Barca area with intent, Kane side-stepped Nelson Semedo and planted a powerful low strike into the far corner for his 10th goal in 12 Champions League appearances.

'With respect to the other players, Messi is unique, ' he added.

A gallant Tottenham side, missing the likes of Dele Alli, Christian Eriksen and Jan Vertonghen, nearly levelled when Lucas Moura's shot deflected wide but Messi ended their resistance after again being picked out by Alba.

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