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Thursday, March 19, 2015

No Dinner at Champions League Top Table for Premier League Clubs

There will be no English teams in the UEFA Champions League quarter finals draw after Manchester City, the last remaining of the four representatives failed to upset the odds in their second leg clash with Barcelona.

Manuel Pellegrini’s men, having lost 2-1 at home were unable to overturn the deficit at Camp Nou where Lionel Messi once again underlined why he’s being considered by many as the best footballer on the planet. The Argentine produced a superman-esque performance which was capped with a cool-headed assist for Ivan Rakitic who scored the only goal of the night.

The 1-0 win for Barcelona was an injustice to them on a night when they exposed Man City’s European football inexperience. However, it was justice to Joe Hart who besides conceding the goal, was the only Manchester City player on the pitch who performed in a manner befitting the occasion.

Hart pulled one point blank save after another, keeping Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar at bay time and again.

He was only slightly outdone by his opposite number, Marc-Andre ter Stegen who saved a Sergio Aguero penalty with 13 minutes to go to save Barcelona a nervy finish.

As they walked off the pitch having lost 1-0 on the night and 3-1 on aggregate, even the most diehard of Man City players must have said to himself that they were not anywhere near the best team over the two legs. Much had been written pre-match how in their past three encounters, they had been reduced to ten men.

However, had they introduced a 12th man at the Camp Nou, Barcelona would have still progressed.

And so it was written and so it came to pass that the 2014-15 Champions League season won’t have an English team in the last 8. Liverpool exited at the group stage, Chelsea, Arsenal and Manchester City followed having gone just one step past the Merseysiders.

The last 8 going into the draw has three Spanish clubs; Real Madrid, Atletico Madrid and Barcelona, with the rest having one representative each, AS Monaco (France), FC Porto (Portugal), Bayern Munich (Germany), and Juventus (Italy).

You can only imagine how somber the English nation will be when the draw is conducted and they realize they have just taken yet another step backward.

And That's thesteifmastertake!!