Keita stars as Barca complete Bayern mission

BAYERN MUNICH shared a draw with Barcelona to partly make up for a crushing defeat in Spain last week, but they were still eliminated from the Champions League 5-1 on aggregate last night.

Franck Ribery gave Bayern the lead in the 47th minute, but Barcelona hit back with Seydou Keita’s drive restoring parity in the 73rd minute.

It was always going to take a miracle for Bayern to overturn the substantial 4-0 deficit in front of their own fans at the Allianz Arena and, as expected, it proved to be a bridge too far for the Bundesliga side.

If Bayern were going to make a game of it, it was imperative they scored early on and they had the chance to do so in the sixth minute when Sosa robbed Abidal and swung in a tempting cross which Luca Toni unconvincingly flicked wide from eight yards.

Toni had the ball in the back of the net a minute later, but the linesman’s flag had long since been raised to deny him.

Barca needed time to get into the game, but their first spell of pressure coincided with several incursions from Messi.

He set up Samuel Eto’o in the 34th minute, but the Cameroon international’s shot was blocked by Lucio.

Daniel Alves then shot over the crossbar before Martin Demichelis made a crucial sliding challenge to deny Messi.

Bayern weathered the first storm adequately and returned to the other end for Toni to blaze his angled drive over the crossbar after being fed by Van Bommel.

And the hosts went ahead two minutes into the second half when Ze Roberto slid a pass into the path of Ribery, who shifted the ball onto his preferred right foot and fired high into Victor Valdes’ goal.

Even though their overall advantage was barely dented by the goal, Barca’s pride was still at stake and they showed they did not want to be beaten on the night.

They had an appeal for a penalty waved away by referee Roberto Rosetti when Mark van Bommel used his strength to barge Andres Iniesta to the ground.

A skilful exchange of passes led to Barca’s equaliser in the 73rd minute as their slick one-touch football carved open the Bayern defence with Keita providing the finish from 25 yards.

Iniesta, Eto’o and Xavi Hernandez all combined to provide Keita with the chance to put the tie beyond any doubt and set up a semi-final meeting with Chelsea for Pep Guardiola’s men.


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