Munich - Neymar has struck twice as Barcelona reached the Champions League
final on Tuesday, beating Bayern Munich 5-3 on aggregate in their
semi-final despite losing 3-2 on the night to the Germans at the Allianz
Luis Enrique's Barca survived a Bayern second-half
fightback to keep alive their treble dreams as they close in on winning
the Spanish league and face Athletic Bilbao in the Spanish Cup final on
In contrast, Pep Guardiola's Bayern bowed out at the
last-four stage for the second year running, despite ending Barcelona's
18-game unbeaten run.
Bayern were facing what looked like an
impossible task after going down 3-0 in last week's first leg at the
Camp Nou, but they were given an early glimmer of hope in the return
when the unmarked Medhi Benatia headed home on seven minutes.
the final outcome of the tie was put beyond doubt when Luis Suarez
twice set up Neymar to score for the visitors before half an hour had
Bayern produced a rousing second-half performance and
goals from Robert Lewandowski and Thomas Mueller allowed them to win
the game on the night, but Barcelona advance to the final in Berlin on
June 6, where they will face either bitter rivals Real Madrid or
While Lionel Messi dazzled in the first leg by scoring
twice and setting up Neymar in a 3-0 romp, it was the Selecao star who
extinguished Bayern's Berlin dreams and took his tally to 11 goals in
his last 10 games.
Before that, Bayern opened the scoring when
Xabi Alonso floated in a corner and Benatia headed home unmarked for his
first Champions League goal.
That ended Barca's seven-match run
without conceding and briefly put life back into the hosts' faint dreams
of reaching an 11th European Cup final. But it was not to last.
the game running at a frantic pace, Messi put a ball in behind the
Bayern defence for Suarez to square for Neymar to have a simple tap-in
on 15 minutes.
Bayern pressed forward and Mueller's header was palmed over by Barca's Germany goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen on 19 minutes.
sides had their chances when Lewandowski, then Mueller, fired at ter
Stegen and at the other end Messi did the same at Manuel Neuer.
Barcelona put the tie beyond the hosts when Suarez broke on the right
and again squared unselfishly for Neymar to fire inside the near post
and make it 2-1 on the night and 5-1 on aggregate.
Schweinsteiger then had a bullet header saved and ter Stegen clawed a
Lewandowski attempt off the line with half-time approaching.
Enrique rested Suarez for the second half and the game's tempo dropped,
but Lewandowski kept home fans dreams alive by firing past ter Stegen on
59 minutes, while Mueller fired wide with a shot minutes later.
made good on his pre-match promise that Bayern would fight until the
final whistle when he blasted Schweinsteiger's squared pass home on 74
minutes to make it 5-3 on aggregate, but it was too little, too late.