Barcelona scored twice courtesy of Luis Suárez while Sergio Agüero eased the scoreline which ended up 2-1 to the Catalans at the Etihad stadium.
It appeared that the sky blues were unable to learn from past clashes with the Catalan giants and simply failed to turn up for the first half in which Suárez netted twice.pellegrini knows too well what his team is capable of and what is expected from them on March 18th when they meet the Catalans for the second leg of the draw. City have to win by 2 goals to nil to seal their place in the next round of the Champions League.
Also, Pellegrini’s men have their disciplinary to sort out too. Amazingly, City have been left down to 10 men in their last 3 outings against Barça and have had 5 players sent off in their last 9 Champions League games. This leaves the Etihad outfit at a serious disadvantage when playing decent clubs and it’s a situation that has to be remedied at once. To go behind to a team like Barcelona and then lose a player is effectively putting the last nail in your coffin yourself.
What bothered skipper Vincent Kompany was the way that City started the game collectively – contrary to everything Pellegrini had told them prior to the match.
Kompany said: “It was mainly down to us not turning up. Teams can play well and teams can beat us, it happens but the way we played in the first half wasn’t us.”
And with Yaya Toure back for the clash on March 18th at the Nou Camp, both City and Barça know the tie has not been won yet. City will have to bring their ‘A’ game in 3 weeks and ‘bring it’ to the Catalans from the get go for 90 minutes. Failure to do so will mean waiting another year till City can prove themselves to be in Europe’s top elite.