Published: Wed, April 17, 2019
Sport | By Wendy Sparks

Barcelona a level above Manchester United, says Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

Barcelona a level above Manchester United, says Ole Gunnar Solskjaer

Thirteen of those strikes have come in his last nine appearances against English sides at Camp Nou, including hat-tricks v Arsenal (April 2010) and Manchester City (October 2016).

PSG led United 2-0 from the first leg at Old Trafford but lost 1-3 at the Parc des Princes to exit the competition on the away goals rule.

After an excellent start, United were undone twice in four minutes by Messi, who first nicked the ball off the careless Ashley Young and then watched as a weak shot from distance squirmed underneath David de Gea.

His first goal, Barcelona's opener, was such a blow for United as they struggled to mentally recover, as shown by De Gea's mistake for Messi's second minutes later.

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A bad night may have turned out to be so different, though, if United had capitalised on a flying start. Marcus Rashford almost put them level on aggregate inside 30 seconds when he raced clear and hit a rising shot which clipped the crossbar.

First he took too long at a free-kick and put United in danger by going backwards (1), then he passed the ball straight at Ivan Rakitic (2) before doing a pointless Cruyff Turn (3) and giving it away again (4).

Pogba lashed out at the increasingly influential Arthur and Barca could have had a third before half-time, De Gea scrambling across to save on the line when Sergi Roberto should have finished.

Barca goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen's only real stop was in the 89th minute from substitute Alexis Sanchez's header. Barcelona won this match to enter the semi-final of UEFA Champions League 2018-19.

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Manchester United will now switch their attentions back towards Premier League affairs and their trip to Everton on Sunday afternoon.

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'This Barcelona team are the level we have to aspire to.

"If we want to get back to Man Utd's true level, true traditions, we have to challenge Barcelona".

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United's Jesse Lingard also hailed Barca superstar Messi. 'He brought his A-game tonight, he's one of the best in the world.

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