January 30, 2023

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Barcelona ends Champions League campaign with win over Plzen

2 min read

Barcelona signed off a tough Champions League campaign with a win after coming out 4-2 victors in an action-packed clash with Viktoria Plzen.

The Blaugrana were already condemned to a place in the Europa League ahead of their final match of Group C, with Inter and Bayern Munich’s progression assured last week.

Barca’s only other victory of a dismal Champions League campaign came in the reverse fixture against Plzen in September, but Xavi’s team rallied to win in style at the Doosan Arena.

Ferran Torres scored twice after Marcos Alonso’s early opener and though Plzen hit back through Tomas Chory’s double, Pablo Torre marked his first Barca start with a goal to settle the contest.

With nothing but pride to play for, Barca started strongly and were ahead in the sixth minute when Ansu Fati’s shot was spilled by Jindrich Stanek, with Alonso quickest to pick off the rebound and prod home.

It set the tempo for a half where Barca dominated, though they had to wait until just before the interval to strike again.

Torres’ close-range finish was originally disallowed for offside, but a VAR consultation overturned the original call to double Barca’s lead.

Plzen unexpectedly struck back after the restart – Chory converting a penalty he won after drawing a foul from Torre – yet Barca’s two-goal cushion was restored when Torres swept home from Raphinha’s cutback at the end of a neat move.

Chory capitalised on slack defending to double his tally in the 63rd minute, though 19-year-old Torre lashed in Barca’s fourth to wrap things up, with Plzen failing to convert a flurry of late chances to set up a grandstand finale.

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