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Friday, Dec 14, 2018

REPORT: UEFA Champions League Quarter-Finals First leg (Tuesday, 5 Apr 2016)

By Prince Dulzy

At Camp Nou, Barcelona fought back to beat rivals Atletico Madrid 2-1 in the first leg of the Champions League quarter-final on Tuesday night.

Luis Suarez bagged brace to help the Catalans battled back to a 2-1 Champions League victory over Atletico Madrid, after Barcelona went down in the 25th minute when Fernando Torres struck the opening goal of the game – and his 11th in 15 games against Barca.

Fernando Torres however went from hero to villain when he picked up a needless second booking just 10 minutes after scoring, and Barca began to turn up the pressure, with Lionel Messi close to converting a fine overhead kick and Neymar rattling Jan Oblak’s crossbar.

Atleti’s admirable resistance was eventually broken when Suarez steered home Jordi Alba’s effort on 63 minutes, and the Uruguay striker finished off a fine team move 16 minutes from time to give Luis Enrique’s side the lead with his seventh goal in five home Champions League games this season.

Messi was denied a late penalty shout after tumbling under pressure in the crowded area as Barca were made to settle for a result which keeps the tie intriguingly poised ahead of the second leg.

Elsewhere, Arturo Vidal scored 2 minutes into the game as Bayern beat Benfica 1-0 in the first league of the Champions League quarter-final on Tuesday night.

Benfica came twice to equalising and giving Benfica a priceless away goal through Jonas, but failed in both occasions.

The Primeira Liga leaders also had a penalty appeal rejected when a cross hit Bayern captain Philipp Lahm on the arm on the box.

Benfica have not reached the semi-finals since the 1989-90 season and face a tough task to overturn their first-leg defeat, with Bayern seeking a last-four place for the fifth-straight year.

This win means Pep Guardiola’s team have now won 11 successive Champions League home games, extending their club record, while Benfica have now failed to beat the Bundesliga champions in seven attempts.

Guardiola had hailed Benfica’s defence as the best in Europe before the game, but it took Bayern less than two minutes to break the visitors’ resistance.

Ederson denied Franck Ribery with his legs after 80 minutes as Bayern looked to kill the tie off and Benfica could not break down a stubborn Bayern back line, leaving them with a mountain to climb in the second leg.

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