- Napoli vs Barcelona's Champions League first leg of round of 16 tie ended 1-1
- Lionel Messi failed to scored in this encounter as his side avoided a defeat
- Dries Mertens scored for Napoli, while Antoine Griezmann netted for Barcelona
Reigning Spanish champions Barcelona on Tuesday night, February 25, forced Italian side Napoli to a 1-1 draw in the first leg of their Champions League round of 16 encounter.
The home team produced superb performance in the first half which Barcelona players never believe they would get what they got in Italy.
Napoli had the first chance to score in the fifth minute when Mario Rui directed a long ball to Jose Callejon, but he was unable to beat goalkeeper Marc Stegen.
They had another chance almost a minute later through Fabian who benefited from a superb pass by Manolas before blasting over the bar.
After much trouble, Napoli eventually scored their goal in the 30th minute through Dries Mertens who got an excellent pass from Piotr Zielinski.
The first half however ended with Napoli taking their 1-0 lead to the dressing room in front of their homes fans who were impressive.
Barcelona came out with another game plan in the second half against Napoli and they had to wait till the 57th minute before netting the equalizer through Antoine Griezmann who was assisted by Nelson Semedo.
Lionel Messi missed a glorious chance which could have given Barcelona the lead in the 60th minute as his shot was blocked by David Ospina.
The encounter however ended 1-1 with Barcelona having an edge going into the second leg at the Nou Camp.
Earlier, Legit.ng had reported how Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi has been playing for the club since he was young when he started his career with the famous academy side La Masia before moving to the main team.
Lionel Messi has never played for any other club in his career other than Barcelona despite all the attempts of many clubs to lure him away from the Nou Camp.
The Argentina international has won all the trophies at club level with Barcelona.
At the age of 32, many pundits are of the opinion that Lionel Messi may not win the World Cup in his career considering the age he will turn to when the next championship holds.
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