Barcelona 6-1 AS Roma: Underdogs hammered by dazzling Los Culés

Barcelona had the trio of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar for the first time in the starting XI since the Argentinean star was sidelined with the injury he sustained against UD Las Palmas.

Their impact was completely felt as the trio participated directly in all six goals, and the team dominated AS Roma completely, cruising to a 6-1 win that secured them a berth on the Round of 16 of the UEFA Champions League.

Barcelona start with two quick goals

The game started with a lot of intensity and as it was expected, Barcelona were clearly the more positive side in the early going. Los Culés were moving the ball around with ease and that was reflected in the number of chances they created early. Messi was particularly active and the Argentinean star had two clear chances before Edin Dzeko answered back with a header that went wide.

Barcelona were always in control and they broke the deadlock in the 15th minute when Luis Suarez tapped home into an empty net after a pass from Dani Alves. The fans hadn't stop cheering when the Uruguayan striker assisted Messi who chipped the ball over Wojciech Szczesny to make it 2-0.

The hosts cruised until the half-time break

Roma were completely unable to react. Alessandro Florenzi and Iago Falque ended playing more like wide midfielders so the offensive strategy of a 4-3-3 quickly became a 4-5-1 in an effort to reduce Barcelona's dominance in terms of possession as they had the ball almost 75% of the time.

This meant that Dzeko was often isolated up top and the Serie A side proved to be unable to create much on offense. Barca, on the other hand, controlled the game rather easily and they would add another goal before the break when Suarez doubled his tally shortly before the HT break. The Uruguayan star found the back of the net with a brilliant left-footed volley to put the hosts up by three goals at the break.

Suarez enjoyed a positive night (photo: reuters)
Suarez enjoyed a positive night (photo: reuters)

Roma couldn't react in the second half

Despite the fact that Roma introduced a change in the second half with the entrance of Juan Manuel Iturbe to replace Radja Nainggolan - who was pretty poor in midfield - the Italians were unable to pose much of a threat offensively and they looked outplayed on both ends of the pitch.

Barcelona didn't step the foot off the gas and they repeated the scheme of the first half when they scored two goals in a couple of minutes. Los Blaugranas added a fourth goal in the 56th minute when Gerard Pique scored following a pass from Messi and the Argentinean star notched his brace four minutes later following a rebound.

The entrance of William Vainqueur didn't help Roma's midfield as the French looked completely out of place - he was booked shortly after coming in and he couldn't do much to stop the opposing playmakers.

Barcelona moved the ball around until the final whistle

The final 30 minutes of the match weren't very interesting. Considering Barcelona had created a five-goal lead and that Roma's offensive players weren't a threat to an organised back-line, neither side was able to create too much on offense although Barcelona always had the possession and it seemed they were always on the brink of adding more goals to their account.

The nail in the coffin arrived in the 77th minute. After Neymar missed a penalty kick, Adriano Correia capped the rebound to score Barcelona's sixth goal. Roma could've had a goal in the 82th minute but Dzeko failed to convert a penalty, although the Bosnia captain would get his revenge when he scored on stoppage time to give Roma a goal just before the end.

Referee Cuneyt Cakir blew his whistle and the home fans were in absolute joy after the great show Barcelona offered in front of their home crowd.

Up next

The three points allowed Barcelona to clinch a berth in the next round of the UEFA Champions League. Roma, on the other hand, will have to decide their fate in the final matchday where they will play against BATE Borisov at home.