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Liverpool through to Champions League quarters

Liverpool through to Champions League quarters
Liverpool’s Van Dijk wheels away in celebration after scoring the second goal during their Champions League match against Bayern Munich.
London, Mar 14 (Agencies) | Publish Date: 3/14/2019 12:13:49 PM IST

Sadio Mane scored twice as Liverpool advanced into the Champions League quarter-finals with a 3-1 victory over a toothless Bayern Munich in the second leg of their last-16 tie.

Following a goalless draw in the first leg at Anfield, Mane put Liverpool ahead with a brilliantly-taken goal in the 26th minute at the Allianz Arena.

Bayern hit back late in the first half when Serge Gnabry’s cross was deflected in by Joel Matip but Van Dijk headed in from a corner in the 69th minute and Mane scored a late third to end Bayern’s hopes.

Liverpool join Premier League rivals Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham in the quarter-finals, with all four sides able to face each other in Friday’s draw. 

After a cagey opening, in which Jordan Henderson went off with an ankle injury, Liverpool took the lead thanks to a fantastic goal from Mane.

Mane expertly controlled a long pass, swivelled around Manuel Neuer on the edge of the area and then finished with a chipped shot into the far corner. The home fans urged Bayern to respond, but the hosts lacked a cutting edge in attack.

It was a surprise when they equalised in the 39th minute, with Gnabry getting behind Andy Robertson down the right side and putting in a cross that Matip turned into his own net. 

Chances remained at a premium in a scrappy second half.

Neuer saved a shot from Mohamed Salah and Gnabry slid a cross through the six-yard box that was just ahead of Robert Lewandowski.

Otherwise neither team really threatened until Van Dijk rose highest at a corner and headed into the net to put Liverpool ahead again.

The goal deflated Bayern and they never looked like getting back into the tie even before Mane finished from Salah’s cross in the 84th minute.

Liverpool comfortably held out in the closing stages, although Robertson was booked in injury-time and will now miss the first leg of the quarter-final.

Barca beat Lyon 5-1

 Lionel Messi scored twice and assisted two as Barcelona eased into the Champions League quarter-finals with a 5-1 win over Lyon (5-1 on aggregate).

Messi converted from the spot (18) before Philippe Coutinho tapped in Barcelona’s second just after the half-hour mark (31) to send Barcelona into a comfortable lead.

Lucas Tousart pulled one back from close range to give the visitors a glimmer of hope (58) after the break, but a second goal from Messi and a further two from Gerard Pique and Ousmane Dembele - both assisted by the Argentine - sent Barcelona through.

Messi fired Barcelona’s first warning shot in the sixth minute with a trademark curled strike aiming for the top corner, but Anthony Lopes acrobatically parried away. Ten minutes later, Barcelona took the lead after defender Jason Denayer clumsily slid into Luis Suarez in the box. After a minute-long VAR delay, Messi stepped up and cooly delivered a panenka spot-kick down the middle.

With Barcelona dominating possession, and Lyon’s back five getting picked apart after Moussa Dembele went close for the visitors with a deflected strike, the hosts made it two through Coutinho.

The former Liverpool forward tapped home after Suarez casually skipped by Fernando Marcal. And in the 33rd minute, Lopes came off in tears for Mathieu Gorgelin after suffering an earlier head injury.

Lyon pulled back a surprise consolation in the 58th minute when Tousart volleyed in from close range, but any signs of a comeback were cancelled out when Messi grabbed a second 20 minutes later as his finish, following a rapid counter-attack, squirmed past the backup goalkeeper.

With Lyon electing to finish the game with four forwards on the pitch, Barcelona grabbed another two goals in the final 10 minutes as the visitors’ backline was cut open.

Gerard Pique slid in to tap home at the far post after Messi drove at the heart of Lyon’s defence, seven minutes before Dembele was the grateful recipient of a Messi pass to convert Barcelona’s fifth and cap off a ruthless display.

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