Lionel Messi (pictured) scored four goals, including a first half hat-trick, to power Barcelona past injury riddled Arsenal at the Camp Nou. The 4-1 final score and 6-3 aggregate victory for the Catalan side came compliments of the little man up front as Messi single-handedly brought the tie back in favor of the home side after Nicklas Bendtner opened the game’s scoring for Arsenal. Four unanswered goals were more than enough to send Barça through to the semi-finals. In the end the Gunners were doomed by their lack of attacking options, though Barcelona were missing several stars of their own to injury and suspensions. But Barcelona were clearly the better side in this tie for three of the four halves played.

And in Russia, a Wesley Sneijder free kick on six minutes sent Internazionale into the semi-final round at the expense of CSKA Moscow. The Russians were supposed to hold the advantage after having last weekend off and playing on their artificial surface at the Luzhniki Stadium. But it was Inter who stole that advantage in the early moments with Sneijder’s free kick slipping under the wall and into the net. The 1-0 victory was more than well deserved as Inter completely dominated the game from start to finish, despite finishing the tie with only a 2-0 aggregate advantage. So now Inter will meet Barcelona in what will be one of the most anticipated semi-finals in recent memory. And importantly, a semi-final not featuring an English side.


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