Despite a 2-1 defeat at Old Trafford, Barcelona have progressed through to their 8th UEFA Champions League Final after a 6-2 aggregate win over Manchester United. With a 5-0 lead from the First Leg in Spain, Barça rested some key names and were largely outplayed by their English opponents throughout.
Andriy Yarmolenko, a £35.5m signing last summer, put United in front after twenty minutes with a neat strike from inside the area. Seven players went in the book over the next hour, before Robin van Persie converted a penalty with twelve minutes to play to seemingly seal the win on the night.
The visitors made late changes and scored the final goal of the night a moment or two later when one of those subs, Lionel Messi, jinked around Vidic and slotted low past De Gea for Barcelona’s sixth goal over the two legs. Manchester United were very good for the win on their home turf, but all the damage was done at Camp Nou eight days ago.
Barcelona will meet Borussia Dortmund in the Final in Lisbon on 24 May. The two clubs have met four times in continental club competitions. The sides contested the 1997 UEFA Supercup – which was then played over two legs – with Barca winning 2-0 at home before a 1-1 draw in Dortmund.
More recently, they were drawn together in Group F of the Champions League last season, playing out an exciting 2-2 draw at Signal Iduna Park, before Barcelona won 2-1 at home to finish second behind Manchester City in the group.