Barcelona's glorious era is over, but not now, five years ago

Messi and Barça, symbols of ineffectiveness; Mbappé and PSG, examples of power and quality
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REUTERS/ALBERT GEA  -   Round of 16 first leg - FC Barcelona v Paris St Germain. Paris St Germain's Kylian Mbappe in action with Barcelona's Gerard Pique

Paris Saint-Germain humiliated FC Barcelona. 1-4 at the Nou Camp and practically has the tie settled.

The defeat against PSG could have been Messi's last Champions League game at the Nou Camp. And what a last game... In the last few years, Barça, who were once astonishing, have gone from humiliation to humiliation.

Everything is wrong with the team. The team and the management are not up to the task. You could see it coming. Despite starting the game well with a Messi goal from the penalty spot, the feeling was of French superiority.

Everyone rightly criticises the defence, but the truth is that the defence starts with the first striker and Griezmann, Dembélé and Messi lacked freshness in the final metres due to their contribution to the defensive work.

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REUTERS/ALBERT GEA - Barcelona's Gerard Piqué

These games are high wear and high quality matches. The French team wasted strength and quality. Barcelona barely held on for 30 minutes and the players who were brought in to put a stop to the Parisian bloodletting are not up to the level required for this type of match.

Home-grown players and third-rate signings are good enough to win in La Liga, but they are not good enough for the last 16 of the Champions League. Many Culés wonder where Suarez, Rakitic, Vidal, Semedo and Arthur are.

These players who are currently being missed were not good enough to replace Puyol Iniesta Xavi, Pedro .... (it was almost mission impossible), but the change to Lenglet, Dest, Piqué several months injured, Pedri and other starters is a nonsense. If we add to this a Messi who is unmotivated, apathetic and thinking more about his new club than about Barça, the result is a "debacle". 

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REUTERS/ALBERT GEA - Barcelona's Lionel Messi looks dejected

This management has built a squad that would never be among the fifteen best teams in Europe. With the exception of Jordi Alba, with respect to Barça's defenders, would they be starting for Sevilla, Athletic Bilbao, Villareal or Real Sociedad? I'm not even talking about Real Madrid, Atlético de Madrid, City, PSG, Bayern, etc.; they wouldn't even be called up.

But it's the same in midfield, except with De Jong; and up front, what can we say. Kylian Mbappé ate up Dembélé, Griezmann and Messi.

In 2017, 3-0 against Juventus; in 2018, 3-0 against Roma; in 2019, 4-0 against Liverpool 4-0; in 2020, 2-8 against Bayern; and in 2021, 1-4 against PSG. This is the history of FC Barcelona in the Champions League in the last five years.

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AFP/LLUIS GENE - Paris Saint-Germain's France striker Kylian Mbappe 

With elections in sight, the new president will inherit a team that is mediocre in sporting terms and in absolute ruin financially.

Barça's glorious era is over, but not now, five years ago, with Messi's last renewal and the mismanagement of recent signings.