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‘Barca might lose champions league if we continue like this’ – Messi.

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A frustrated Lionel Messi called for change after Barcelona handed the La Liga title to Real Madrid on Thursday, warning the team will lose in the Champions League as well if they fail to improve.

Barca’s title challenge ended with a whimper at Camp Nou, where they were beaten 2-1 by Osasuna while Madrid’s 2-1 victory at home to Villarreal ensured they were crowned Spanish champions. Defeat increases the pressure on coach Quique Setien, who took over in January with Barcelona sitting top of the table. Club president Josep Maria Bartomeu has said Setien will remain in charge for the Champions League next month, when Barca play their second leg at home to Napoli, with the last-16 tie in the balance at 1-1.

“The feeling of the team is that it tries but can’t do it, that we leave a lot to be desired in many areas and today in the first half I think they were better than us,” Messi said after the loss to Osasuna. “I said long ago that if we continued in this way, it would be very difficult to win the Champions League and that has been shown to be the case in La Liga too. “If we want to fight for the Champions League we will have to change a lot because otherwise the match against Napoli, we will lose that as well.” Messi scored a brilliant free-kick against Osasuna but it was not enough. Madrid pulled seven points clear of Barcelona ahead of Sunday’s final round of games. “We didn’t expect or want to finish like this but it almost sums up the whole year,” said Messi. “We have been very inconsistent, very weak, beaten on intensity or desire.

“They created chances very easily and scored. During the whole year we have been inconsistent and we have lost a lot of points where we shouldn’t have. This game showed what this year has been about for us.”

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Bruno Fernandes’s penalty hands United a first home win in a match of two penalties

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Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer concedes his side were ‘lucky’ that West Brom had a penalty decision overturned in their 1-0 win at Old Trafford.

 

After a goalless first 45 minutes, Slaven Bilic’s side were awarded a spot-kick early in the second half after referee David Coote ruled that Bruno Fernandes had fouled Conor Gallagher in the box.

 

VAR however intervened with the decision eventually changed after Coote reviewed the incident on the sideline. Replays suggested Fernandes did make some contact with the ball before the man.

 

The Red Devils made the most of the call and were themselves awarded a penalty 10 minutes later which Fernandes tucked away at the second time of asking after his first attempt was saved only for goalkeeper Sam Johnstone to be caught coming of his line.

 

Solskjaer, referencing Aston Villa’s similarly overturned last-minute spot-kick in their 2-1 home defeat to Brighton earlier on Saturday, told BT Sport he thought both penalties should have been awarded.

 

He said: “I looked at the penalty this afternoon at Villa-Brighton, and there’s contact on the ball and the man. In my head, it might be a penalty, and there as well.

 

With this victory, United see themselves in the top half of the table for the first time this seasin with 13 points from 9 games at 8th position.

 

While for West Brom, they remain in the bottom three with only 3 points.

 

United will host Istanbul Basaksehir midweek, while also to play away to Southampton on Sunday.

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