WATCH: Barcelona’s Joao Cancelo scores an AMAZING equalizer against Porto in the Champions League
Joao Cancelo's MOTM performance sealed an all-important win for Barcelona.
Barcelona's Joao Cancelo nets a stunning equalizer against Porto in the UCL. (Images via: El Espanol & Screengrab from beIN broadcasting)
FC Barcelona have been in a close race to top their Champions League group following tough competition from FC Porto and FC Shakhtar Donetsk. After Shakhtar’s win over Antwerp earlier, the three teams were all tied on points. Meanwhile, Barcelona and Porto locked heads. Playing at home, Barca conceded in the 30th minute after Pepe scored off a rebound. But Joao Cancelo ensured the side was still in the game with an ‘outrageous’ equalizer just 2 minutes later.
The Portuguese left-back received the ball high up the pitch. As he got the ball, he cut inside to the box, getting past Joao Mario with ease, and struck the ball accurately into the bottom left corner, with the Porto keeper- Diogo Costa- not getting anywhere near it.
Since joining the Catalans on loan from Manchester City, he has been unstoppable. Cancelo has a G/A of 5 in 16 games across all competitions for Xavi’s side. Furthermore, he showed the same in the game against Porto as well when he assisted the team’s second goal.
Joao Felix scored Barcelona’s 2nd goal in the 57th minute, getting them in the lead of the game and ensuring they were closer to their 4th victory in the Champions League. It was a brilliant combination play from both the Joaos of the team. With this goal, they could finish UCL game week 5 at the top of their group with a 3-point gap.
Champions League Round of 16 awaits for Xavi and Barcelona
Barcelona have not had a good run in the past few Champions League seasons they have played in. In 2019/20, they were thrashed 8-2 by Bayern Munich in the Quarter-Finals, failed to reach the quarter-finals in 2020/21, and failed to make it out of the group stages in the next two seasons, being relegated to the Europa League which they failed to win.
But in the new season, it looks like there has been a positive change in the club. After winning the La Liga in 2022/23, their Champions League campaign started with a bang. They won their first 3 matches, beating all their opponents, but then lost to the Ukrainian side Shakhtar Donetsk. Their win over Porto now puts them 3 points clear.
Barcelona’s victory over Porto now puts them at the top of the group, but their qualification is not yet confirmed. Due to Antwerp failing to win a single match, both Porto and Shakhtar are drawn on points with 9 each, with Barcelona with 12.
With their qualification confirmed, Barcelona are through to the Round of 16, returning to the UCL knockouts after 2 seasons. Even if they do lose to Royal Antwerp, they will still qualify as the side can’t be overtaken by both Shakhtar and Porto, who will face each other in the next UCL game week.
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