Last night saw Bayern Munich completely outclass Barcelona in the Champions League semi-final first-leg encounter in Germany, leading many to question whether the Catalan giant's stranglehold on Europe's top competition is loosening.
A 4-0 scoreline did not flatter the hosts, who go into the return fixture having all but secured their place in the final at Wembley, although you'd be foolish to rule out Tito Vilanova's side altogether, having overturned a two-goal deficit to beat AC Milan in the quarter-final stage.
Here, we provide a player-by-player rating on how the two teams fared. But do you agree? Leave a comment below & have your say!
Very little to bother the Bayern shot stopper due to their solid defensive unit but coped competently when called upon.
Quieter than usual going forward than we’re used to seeing from the little full-back but composed in defence and kept Dani Alves quiet.
Extremely assured. A couple of nervy early clearances but grew into the game.
Defended well when needed but rarely called into any last ditch action.
Supported Bayern attacks well and defended capably against what looked like a formidable Barca attack. Never let his opposing man into the game– be it Pedro or Sanchez.
Hounded and harried in a crowded midfield and did the necessary dirty work to snuff out Barca attacks.
Midfield master-class. Covered every blade of grass on the pitch, put his foot in when necessary and was a cool head in possession.
Ribery: 8 (Man of the Match)
Constant threat and outstanding going both ways. Carried Bayern counter attacks with purpose and helped his full-back with the marauding Alves.
Two goals to his name and a hand in all. Industrious performance with quality to boot. A serious contender for man of the match.
Another contender for man of the match. A constant thorn in the Barca side and grabbed himself a goal. Excellent performance with a work rate many thought he was incapable of.
Lead the line well and got on the score sheet.
Busy in the middle when introduced.
Little time to make any real impression with the game already won.
Poor performance. Extremely susceptible at set-pieces and never installed any confidence in his back four.
Raided down the right, as expected, and worked hard to create openings but end product left much to be desired. Kept quiet by the excellent Ribery and Alaba.
Solid display. Covered well when Bayern countered and comfortable bringing possession forward.
The young centre-half looked out of his depth. Uncomfortable in possession and spurned two decent chances.
Attempted to get forward but there was little for him to work with down Barca’s left. Constantly troubled by Robben and booked for a bit of petulance, throwing the ball in the winger’s face late on.
Held his position in central midfield but was crab-like in the use of possession. Bypassed by swift Bayern counters.
Tidy and economical in possession – as you’d expect. Attempted to dictate tempo but created little.
The only of the Barca team that had any of their usual spark. Lively and probing but struggled to penetrate an excellent and organised Bayern unit.
Lively at times, but lacked cutting edge and end product.
Clearly not match fit. Off the pace and looked increasingly frustrated as the game progressed.
Struggled to get into the game. Stifled by Bayern’s tactics, who doubled up whenever he was in possession in dangerous areas.
Little time to make any kind of impact. Could and should have been used earlier.
DISCLAIMER: This article has been written by a member of the GiveMeFootball Writing Academy and does not represent the views of GiveMeFootball.com or SportsNewMedia. The views and opinions expressed are solely that of the author credited at the top of this article. GiveMeFootball.com and SportsNewMedia do not take any responsibility for the content of its contributors.
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: https://www.givemesport.com/writeforgms