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Griezmann Rescues Barcelona First Leg Draw At Napoli

Barcelona’s French ahead Antoine Griezmann (R) celebrates with teammates after scoring a purpose through the UEFA Champions League spherical of 16 first-leg soccer match between SSC Napoli and FC Barcelona on the San Paolo Stadium in Naples on February 25, 2020. Filippo MONTEFORTE / AFP

 

Antoine Griezmann rescued a 1-1 draw for Barcelona at Napoli within the first leg of their Champions League last-16 tie on Tuesday.

Frenchman Griezmann struck simply earlier than the hour mark for Barca in Naples after Dries Mertens had put the hosts forward within the 30th minute together with his 121st Napoli purpose, equalling the membership all-time high scorer Marek Hamsik.

Barcelona ended the sport with 10 males after Arturo Vidal was despatched off with two minutes to go after selecting up two yellow playing cards, following an indignant conflict with Napoli defender Mario Rui.

Lionel Messi failed to attain on his first look on the Stadio San Paolo the place Napoli legend Diego Maradona reigned supreme three a long time in the past.

The 32-year-old Messi scored 4 targets on the weekend in Barcelona’s 5-Zero win over Eibar that put the Spaniards again the highest of La Liga, however couldn’t add to his 114 Champions League targets.

The conflict was the primary between the 2 groups and in addition a Champions League debut for Barcelona coach Quique Setien and Napoli’s Gennaro Gattuso, who each took over after the group stage.

Messi fired over on 9 minutes after combining properly with Frenkie de Jong however Gattuso’s facet piled the stress on the Catalans.

Their urgent paid off on the half-hour mark, with Piotr Zielinski breaking free down the proper earlier than discovering Mertens, who curled a powerful end previous Marc-Andre ter Stegen.

He equalled Hamsik’s report and is now six targets away from Maradona, however was compelled off within the second half after a Sergio Busquets sort out for which the Spaniard can be suspended for the second leg.

Barcelona didn’t waste a lot time in getting on degree phrases, as Messi and Busquets mixed to ship Semedo into the field within the 57th minute.

The Portuguese full-back crossed low for Griezmann to energy house right-footed.

Ter Stegen denied Lorenzo Insigne with Jose Callejon additionally lacking an opportunity for a second, as did Messi with eight minutes to go.

Vidal was despatched off after a sliding sort out on Rui earlier than showing to headbutt the Napoli defender.

The Chilean may also miss the return leg on the Camp Nou on March 18.

ea/jc

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