Shakhtar shock Barca
Barcelona suffered a shock home defeat at the hands of Shakhtar Donetsk in Champions League Group C.
By Rob Parrish
Last Updated: 09/12/08 10:09pm
Barcelona suffered a shock home defeat at the hands of Shakhtar Donetsk in their final game of UEFA Champions League Group C.
Pep Guardiola's men went into the match already assured of progress as group winners, while the Ukraine outfit knew they would finish in third place and were destined for the Uefa Cup.
Guardiola made a host of changes to his starting XI, with Saturday's La Liga meeting against Real Madrid looming large, as a number of fringe players were given their chance to impress in front of a virtually deserted Camp Nou.
The young home side dominated possession in the opening stages, but the only time Andriy Pyatov was called into action was to deal with a routine shot from outside the box by Bojan Krkic.
Shakhtar's first chance came in the 12th minute when a cross-field ball found Willian in space on the left flank and he cut inside before firing in an effort which was deflected over by Gerard Pique's outstretched boot.
Barca continued to play neat, passing football and on 20 minutes a powerful strike from Alexander Hleb was fisted away by Pyatov before Bojan showed quick feet to create a yard of space for a shot which was deflected narrowly over.
But Mircea Lucescu's visitors stunned the few fans in Camp Nou in the 31st minute by taking the lead after a slick move cut the Barca defence open.
Razvan Rat received possession on the left wing and played in Willian in the area, whose clever cut-back found Olexandr Gladkiy, who beat Albert Jorquera with an assured finish.
Victor Vazquez warmed Pyatov's palms again early in the second half, with the Shakhtar goalkeeper, who also looked ill-at-ease with corners, again opting to punch when it appeared easier to catch.
But it was Barca keeper Jorquera who was beaten again in the 58th minute, as he allowed Jadson's free-kick to reach Gladkiy at the far post for a simple close-range header to make it 2-0.
Guardiola's men responded immediately to cut the deficit as former Arsenal defender Sylvinho played a neat one-two with Seydou Keita before unleashing a powerful shot from the edge of the box.
Barca increased the pressure and dominated possession without carving out any clear-cut opportunities, only to be hit on the break 14 minutes from time as Olexiy Gai played in Rat on the left who squared for Fernandinho to slide the ball home.Eidur Gudjohnsen was immediately sent on and he produced a clever clipped pass to release Sergio Busquets to score with seven minutes to go and set up a tense finish, which saw a flurry of yellow cards from referee Mike Riley.
|Barcelona||Team Statistics||Shakhtar Donetsk|
|0||1st Half Goals||1|
|12||Shots on Target||3|
|3||Shots off Target||2|