Despite one of the most talented attacking front line in world football, Barcelona could not break a determined Chelsea defense and were held to a 0-0 draw in their UEFA Champions League semi-final first leg at Camp Nou.

Barcelona came out flying as Chelsea were forced to set up camp in and around their own penalty are. Lionel Messi dazzled past players with his magical feet and Thierry Henry caused trouble on the left but the amount of yellow shirts blocking the goal forced Barca wide and restricted them to long range efforts.

Chelsea remained happy to allow the waves of Barcelona attacks to flow as they stood firm in front of their goal. The home side continued to play in typical Barca fashion, holding on to possession while seeping towards goal, but all that was missing were the goals.

Chelsea almost shocked Barcelona with the best chance of the first half after Rafael Marquez played a lazy back pass toward Victor Valdes which Didier Drogba pounced on and forced the goalkeeper into a double save before Gerard Pique bundled it out of play.

Barcelona continued to press forward in the second half and Chelsea opted to remain defensive. Samuel Eto’o finally broke past the Chelsea back four and raced towards goal with Alex trying to put on the pressure. But Petr Cech produced a great save to foil the striker’s attempt.

Cech looked confident in goal and was quick to pounce on dangerous through balls as well as rocket like crosses from Dani Alves. Bojan Krkic almost capitalized on one of Alves’ centers at the 90 minute mark but blazed his free header over the bar.

Barca enjoyed one more real chance when the Blues were caught napping at the back and Aliaksandr Hleb was in behind, but Cech once again produced a magnificent save to keep the game goalless.

The result will please the visitors who will play the second leg on Wednesday 6 May at Stamford Bridge in London.

(Soccer365.com)

  • Manny

    Messi’s quick little steps and touches when dribbling, somewhat how Kaka’s executes at times, dazzles the defenders. Backing up with steps as quick as Messi’s, and containing, while depending upon other defenders to Messi’s rear, should do the trick. Would like to hear comments from other coaches on how to defend against the likes of Messi.