Nerveless Messi shots Barça into the Champions League semis >> Culé Talk


Guardiola: 'We were playing against Milan, who have seven Champions League trophies and very good players who could cause us problems. If people expected us to win 7-1, that's unrealistic. Things don't work like that'

Guardiola: 'Milan have had the odd counterattack, but they had three shots at goal and we had 21. We had a lot of goalscoring opportunities, with three defenders and with four'

Guardiola: 'We have to be very careful when we talk about our next rivals. Benfica created a lot of chances against Chelsea in the first leg. They still have a good chance of getting through'

Iniesta: 'Barca had to work hard but we are happy to be in another semi-final. Being in a fifth consecutive semi-final means that things are going very well for us and that the team still has the ambition to get here. This Barca team always shows its true colours in such games'

Iniesta: 'With Milan, it's never over. We knew that if Milan scored one more goal we would probably be eliminated. However, the match was for 90 minutes and we knew that we just had to take our chances when they came. Chelsea or Benfica? I just want to play in the semi-finals. That's what is important'

Thiago: 'It's an honour to be in the dressing room with these players, and to achieve these kind of objectives. I am really happy to be at this club. I think we played a very good match and we deserved to win it'


- Barça have beaten AC Milan in style to extend their legend by becoming the first team to qualify for five consecutive semi finals in the Champions League era. Messi, with two penalties, and Iniesta got the Barça goals.

The mark of a Champion is to be able to produce when it matters most. In this heavyweight clash against Milan, the Barcelona team, in general, and Lionel Messi, in particular, did just that. La Pulga is that good that relatively quiet performances by him are still outstanding games. To have the nerve to be able to convert two penalties under the pressure of such an occasion showed that mental toughness is very much part of Messi's character.

Critics will point that Barcelona were awarded two penalties at home. To that I say, it was a pleasant change for the referee to actually do his job properly and award us penalties when they were warranted.

This win ensured that we now have a great opportunity to win our fourth Champions Lerague title in seven years. Both Chelsea and Benfica represent worthy semi final opponents and a final against either Madrid or Bayern Munich would be a huge challenge. However, as I have said, we have usually risen to the big occasion and I hope that continues.

BLAUGRANA HISTORY BECKONS!!!!!!!  

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Guest Post by: Drago at 'Culé Talk'          
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