PSG – Barcelona Liveblog – Leg I

Just when you had started to forget the misguided choice to make me a moderator,  I’m back with a liveblog!

Make sure you read Isaiah’s preview while you drink your pre-match cocktail, and if you’re like me skip out on work early for the match. Alba and Xavi both are passed for fit (or fit enough) and make the starting XI, while Sanchez starts in place of the suspended Pedro. Abidal will keep JDS company in the stands. The starting formation should be interesting – I’m hoping to see Villa in front of Messi, Sanchez on the left, and Alves all up in that right flank but we may see a more traditional 4-3-3. At least Iniesta won’t be on the wing.


Starting XI: Valdes Alves Pique Mascherano Alba Xavi Busquets Iniesta Sanchez Messi Villa

Bench: Pinto, Montoya, Bartra, Song, Cesc, Thiago, Tello

PSG XI: Sirigu Jallet Silva Alex Maxwell Matuidi Beckham Moura Pastore Lavezzi Ibrahimovic


Match starts promptly at 2:45 pm EST, and the liveblog will start as soon as I get hunkered down on my parents couch to watch it (~5-10 minutes before).

*As I will be watching Bayern – Juventus right after, I’m going to have to ask for no spoilers of that match in the liveblog, muchas gracias.


  1. According to l’Equipe Thiago Silva dreamt of playing at Barça as a boy, but had already given his word to Leonardo at PSG by the time we came calling last summer…

    Darn, darn, darn!

    1. According to Graham Hunter, negotiations between Barça and Milan were fairly advanced, and Thiago Silva was already telling his Brazilian national teammates that he was going to Barcelona, but the board didn’t want to pay what Milan was asking. PSG swooped in with the cash.

  2. Cable down. Internet down. DVR programmed but will cable be up in time to record the game for me while I’m at work? My only connection to the outside world is this droid. Uhhhhgggggg!

    1. Liveblog well, my friends, so I can lurk at work. Lurking on loveblobs is ussually better than following a gamecast.

    2. 25 minutes to go… pretty nervous to be honest. I’m about to embark on a large lunch break to watch the game.

      Enjoy, everybody! Visca Barça!

  3. Oh, and Calvin? Abidal will have trouble keeping JDS company in the stands as he (JDS) was left in Barcelona. Maybe they will be skyping?

    (Oier and Deulofeu will also be in the stands.)

  4. My pundit says- beckham will play at the right side, and feed ibra diagonal balls over MASHCERANO’S SHOULDER. After what happened against milan, I am really scared of aerial threat especially since the opponent is 7 foot and a LETHAL GOAL SCORER.

  5. the games is pretty much the only thing being talked about here in Paris. wish we were at Parc des Princes tonight…

  6. Interesting choice of Beckham! Slow, not fit but delivers a great costs ball. However, I’m doubling that Barcastuff will leave the marking of Ibra to Masch. Thats Pique’s job.

  7. Nerve racking 1st 37 minutes until Dani put a lovely ball on the outside of his boot over the top from a corner clearance to find Messi in all kinds of space, who volleys it on the ground across the keeper! Perfect technique for the pass and shot! What lovely goal. Messi seems hurt! This could be a serious issue bc like the commentator said, “Messi never asks to come out” Has to be pretty serious. My guess is Hamstring. It could galvinize PSG. We need 1 more goal to make sure. I like that Iniesta took a couple pokes and Alexis took a crack from outside the box. More shots! More shots!

  8. how is the team playing so far since messi was subbed off. Anyone?
    I am new here but i ve been following this blog for a year now. Fantastic people here with insightful contributions. Love this blog and my fav is the blitzen awards.

  9. every single time we play away from home – shite refereeing, Barca fanny about and all off a sudden a dominant position is lost. We COULD be the best team in the world – if we stopped THINKING that we ALREADY were…

  10. Ibra was 10 yards offside! How can the assistant miss that? Not even close. The ref calling Villa for the foul that set up the Ibra offside goal was shit as well. Villa won the ball and was trying to get to it and held. Unbelievable! C’mon! What a crap deflection!

  11. I’m pissed off about the way that game ended but all things considered 2-2 is not a bad result. Especially considering that Messi only played the first half. I really hope that he won’t be out for very long.

    It got remarkably chippy in the 2nd half – it was almost like a classico.

  12. on the positive side : the best thing is that Valdes is leaving soon . HATE his mistakes .

    1. was not a deflection . and even if , it did not change its direction much and if he could touch it , then he could save it .

      can’t wait to have a real GK . I never feel secure when Valdes is between the sticks .

    2. “was not a deflection”

      The 1st stage is denial and that’s not a river in Egypt.

    3. Did not see any deflection , and if there is one , it’s not a big deflections that should go beyond a barca GK.

      Nice geography info , you are a genius .

    4. There’s a new invention called the internet. U can look up replays, video’s, etc. on YouTube and many other sites. U may want to take a look at the 2nd goal again so u can speak knowledgabely about what your even posting about. 3 people point out a deflection and you still don’t want to concede. So go and watch it with your own eyes.

    5. And there is an invention called courtesy , hope you heard about it .
      Was not a big deflection after all Mr.Know it all . and it touched his hand as stated in the first comment .

    6. messi! stop arguing with xavi, are you even okay after been subbed off? you make me worried there.

      how could you say that xavi, after all the time you’ve played together with valdes.

      sorry, can’t resist.

    7. Sorry, but it was. Seen clearly on Sky. You can also see that he couldn’t move back the other way as he had to turn back and his legs were caught beneath him so he couldn’t push off. Not his fault at all unless folk are looking to blame him.

    8. I’m with Xavi here, glad the team has a chance to improve on the goalkeeping position

    9. Are you taking the mickey out? I hope so b/c that 2nd goal wasn’t even close 2 his fault. It was a deflected shot he had no chance at saving. Valdez played a huge game. How is it his fault our defense allowed Ibra 2 flick on a last minute deep ball in the box?

  13. Wow, let us look at this game. Messi out, Masch out, Alba got a knock, not even close offside goal allowed, ref persistently calling ghost fouls on us and letting PSG foul our midfield and wings all the way up the field. The only bright spot I can see is that our MAN TITO was back on the bench for his 1st game in 3 months!!! So happy he’s back and hopefully healthy.

    1. you are totally right…refs have bombed recently… its hardly believable refereeing for ucl…

      we are loosing men like in some sort of war…

      so we spend 20 mil on Song but didnt want to spend 30 on Silva…

  14. It looks like Messi is out for 3 weeks. So no him in the return leg. We are doomed.

    1. Hardly… But it will let us see whether or not we can cope without him which has been the subject of some discussion recently.

      Should be a good close game. Big decision about who plays upfront though. I’m also gonna guess we’re going to see Song at CB. You heard it here first 🙂

    2. No we aren’t. We still hold the advantage. I’m more concerned about our Defense then Messi. We can score goals. Like Kxevin says, it’s the system. What we can’t do is defend. However, Let’s have Pique, Bartra, Adriano Song, Busi, Xavi, Iniesta, Alexis, Tello, Villa

  15. That’s two games now the ref and his team have managed to “help” us. *rme*

    I thought we were UEFAlona? How is it that we can blatantly have calls against us and people will still think we get help to win things. Ridiculous.

    The player that shouldnt even have played today, scored an offside goal by miles. I thought Stark was apart of our Uefacef conspiracy? He consistently allowed PSG players to foul and hack in the second half with not even a yellow, much less a call..yet as soon as a Barca player breathed on a PSG player, the whistle was louder than the crowd in the stadium. Its frustrating to try to concentrate on the game when there are so many “mistakes” by the officials. And I’m really not in the mood for anyone to tell me not to blame result on officials. I’m not but these things have to be pointed out.

    PSG played well but I do not think they deserved to be level at the end of the game. At all. The draw leaves a bad taste in my mouth. With so many injuries, I wanted some kind of tangible advantage to take back to the Camp Nou. Our defense will allow goals..and with no Messi (possibly) in the second leg we can’t count on outscoring the opposition. Still, I guess 2 away goals is great. Much better than not getting any away goal AND conceding 2 :S

    Sometimes I really dislike this sport.

    1. one Abidal may be in that list too 🙂

      ahh a victory would have been so much better…

    1. Wow – looks like Bartra or Montoya is going to get some playing time.

      Silva sure would look good wearing Barca colors.

  16. I thought Xavi’s goal will seal the victory and despite all those refereeing mistakes and injuries and the constant fouls and whistling almost every time we touched their player, that it will leave at least some good feeling about the return leg.
    This was much better game from us than the one in Milan, it looked like we had the plan, though the tempo was slowish but it suited us.
    Now let’s see how we do without HIM for 3 weeks.
    It’s perfect timing to ensure if some theories had ground, that we are nothing without Messi, or we have so much options that of course it wont be e problem to score goals.

  17. I am not too worried about the Messi absence although I am pissed that he played in the weekend. Now would be a good time to test Alexis in the messi role behind villa and tello for the second leg.
    I also beginning to hate our so called fitness regime when we are supposed to be peaking at this time of the season. Towards the end of the game our boys were dropping like flies all over the place not to metion the injuries. So no Puyol, Adriano, mascherano, can’t count on Abidal too

  18. Buy Thiago Silva!!! This guys is a class defender. Like somebody mentioned earlier, he was a one man wall in the backline of PSG. Ibra being offside or not is irrelevant, the first goal was all Thiago Silva.

    Barca are lucky to come out of the game with 2 2 scoreline. PSG controlled the game from the start, and were threatening the goal through the match. Ancelloti got his tactics absolutely right.

    Brilliance of Messi shown. One shot on goal, and one goal from first touch, and on the volley, and from a very tight angle.

    Alexis had poor ball control and poor finishing, except for the part where he got the penalty, but then he did not have the ball there either.

    Villa was not in the game. Barca pretty much played with 9 men on the field.

    With the passes Cesc made into the box to Sanchez, and a better finisher like Messi, Ronaldo or Jackson Martinez the scoreline would be very different.

    I am not a fan of the rotation policy employed this year by Barca. They could have played Marc Bartra more through the year. And now they have to play him because of injuries. But it should not have come to this. They should have given him more minutes.

    1. I’ve been scouting Jackson Martinez on you tube and I reckon that if Barca slip in quickly (before anyone else has heard about him) they can get him for 50 million.
      P.S. Ronaldo isn’t much of a finisher. His conversion rate is actually lower than Sanchez’s, according to what I read on this blog – it’s just that he bombards the goal.
      But I totally agree with you that we need a big centre forward who will, at the least, give us a few cheap knock-down goals.

    2. If you look at twitter and type Jackson Martinez Barcelona, Atletico Madrid, Manchester United, Manchester City, Liverpool, Dortmund, Chelsea Juventus etc etc… are all lining up for Jackson Martinez.

  19. From what I could see on my live stream in the second half, I thought we flowed quite well without Messi – maybe better than in the first half. Cesc is excellent back to goal, with his deft touches.

  20. Hate 2 point this out, but if Alexis would’ve taken his 2 clear cut opportunities the tie would be over. I’ll give him the 1st one b/c he didn’t have a lot of time, but his 1st touch was really poor. The 2nd 1 should’ve been buried. Cesc put a lovely ball into him.

    1. I noticed that Messi lost the ball a couple of times in the penalty area – what a poor player. Oh, and Ibra, scuffed a few – ditto. They’re always so easy to put away from the couch.

    2. Yes, cause Alexis must never ever be criticized. Especially not without bringing up other players(both of which scored).

    3. No, but it’s rubbish to say he should have scored the second one. Maybe he shouldn’t have scuffed it. But the angle was so tight that even if he hit it like a rocket the keeper would have saved. Have a look at the angle and tell me that was an easy chance.
      If this game showed anything it’s that Barca need a big centre forward because Villa is too small to play back-to-goal against a parked bus. Dzeko anyone?

    4. No, I saw two clear opportunities that he got, where he didn’t even manage to get the shot off cause he’s too busy overthinking. The first he was one on one with the goalie. His control was so poor that by the time he did get the ball steady, PSG players converged on him. The other opportunity he was played in directly by a sweet ball from Cesc. Perhaps one could say that chance was more difficult as, Thiago Silva defended well, but maybe if he had more confidence in himself he would have done better.

  21. Just finished seeing the Bayern Juve match. Pep Guardiola has inherited one of the best teams on this planet. At the current moment with the likes of Ribery, Mandzukic, Muller, Schweinsteiger and youngsters like Alaba and Gustavo… and Shakiri … the sky is the limit for this team. Based on the performance today they might be the best team in CL at the current moment.

    If you think Busi is the best holding midfielder in this world, you guys should watch Schweinsteiger in this match. Efficient passing, beautiful tackles and winning the ball back. He controlled the tempo of this match beautifully.

    What a game by Bayern. Absolute masterclass. The score could have been a 4 0, or a 5 0, instead of 2 0. The Bayern striker Mandzukic took Pirlo out of the game. He along with Alaba Muller caged Pirlo. With Pirlo shut out Juventus were toothless. What a useless striker Matri was for Juve tonight. He was exactly like Villa. Hugging the offside line, and loosing the ball everytime he got it, which was exactly the opposite of what Mandzukic was doing for Bayern. Mandzukic was winning every ball that came to him and fighting for every ball, inspite of being hacked multiple times by Bonucchi, Vidal and Chiellini. A very brave performance by Mandzukic. My man of the match.

    Lahm and Ribery provided the width in Bayern. Schweinsteiger Gustavo and Alaba ran the midfield. Muller was the perfect false 9, and Robben was making dangerous runs. Ribery came a very close second man of the match for me. That guy just does not give up on taking on defenders. He causes the defenders to commit fouls. He also played his part in defence. He ran up and down like Dani all night.

    Bayern are full value for their money.

  22. I don’t know which broadcast I had but Tony Gale is a madman. He would go on and on over normal completed pass by Beckham.

    And the hate this guy has for Busi and sMasch.
    Busi was clearly fouled from the back by Matuidi, even the aggressor apologized and what does this commentator say? He’s a dramatist or something like that.

    Every tackle that sMasch makes follows with a negative comment, even the good ones where he cleanly wins the ball. But when T. Silva won the ball the exact same way just moments before, he went on and on about how good Silva is.

    Such bias. Unbelievable.

  23. Messi doesn’t appear to look to worried about his injury. Maybe as usual, the team gives the media an exaggerated time out for an injury. This has been happening over and over again with Puyol and recently Alba and Xavi.

    Messi used to cry when he had to come off injured. Chelsea.

  24. Messi injury is a big worry but the bigger worry is the lack of pressing when we play a four man defense this season. The midfield and defense is stationed too far apart and that is what causing the lack of pressing as there is more space for the opponents. Against AC Milan at Camp Nou we solved that by pushing Alves further up and then pushing the defense also further up. We may have to do the same in the return leg now.

    2-2 is a fine result for us because of the two away goals. But it also could get tricky as we may feel that we don’t have to take the initiative. We didn’t win this game simply because when PSG were vulnerable in second half, we didn’t go for the kill.

    I would say go back to the same formation as the Milan return leg next week. Stick to a three man pure defense, press like the way did against Milan(for that in present scenario we have to push Alves forward). My line-up for return leg is:








    Why I have Villa instead of Alexis? Because I need a CF who could score.

  25. That kid Moura is something. Everytime he runs with the ball, you know he would create danger. Too bad he lasted only 30mins.

    Pastore was so weak at defending lol.

    Silva, my goodness. First time I really noticed him to be honest. Now I know what all the fuss was about. He cost ONLY 30mill? I thought Milan wanted more than that.

  26. It sucks that I can’t lurk through the liveblog after it’s done. I want to go through all your boring comments. :'(

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