UEL: High Flying Barca Smash 4 past Napoli to Book a Place in Round of 16

The Xavi led Barca side is beginning to manifest the maestro’s ideals on the pitch with a season defining road show in Naples, Italy.

Having been knocked out of the Champions League and Copa del Rey, and with the league out of their reach for now, FC Barcelona is left with only the Europa League as the most viable competition they have a chance in.

The first leg at Nou Camp ended in a stalemate after it appeared old woes were coming back to haunt them. But, everything changed in Naples at the fixture tagged the Maradonna derby.

The Catalan side instantly took control of proceedings once the game started, pressing Napoli and harrying them when off the ball.

In the 8th minute of the match, the constant pressing from La Blaugrana yielded a counter-attack coordinated by Adama Traore before setting up an easy finish for Jordi Alba. He didn’t waste time in slotting the ball pass the hapless Napoli goalie and into the back of the net to give Barca the lead.

Once the Catalan side tasted the game, they didn’t let their foot off the gas, and continued to mount pressure as Frenkie de Jong and Pedri continued to control the midfield, starving the Italian side of possession.

In the 13th minute, a Ferran Torres drop down was skillfully controlled by Frenkie de Jong who went solo, drifted into the opponent’s box and curled a curved drive past a confused Napoli goalkeeper who was pinned to the ground as the ball went pass him to double Barca’s lead.

A Ter Stegen howler gifted Napoli a penalty which was converted by Insigne. However, Barca added another goal in the 45th minute, thanks to a Gerard Pique strike while Aubameyang nailed the final coffin on the cross in the 59th minute to essentially put the game out of reach for Napoli.

The Italian side did claw one goal back in the 89th minute through Politano, but it was too late and was not enough to stop them crashing out of the competition.

The win means FC Barcelona is now in the round of 16 of the Europa League and will be hoping for another smooth victory in the next round while the team continue to rebuild and gel.

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