Roma stun Barcelona to reach semi-finals

Roma are through to the semi-finals after a sensational second leg comeback against Barcelona.

Roma overturned last week's 4-1 first leg defeat to reach the UEFA Champions League semi-finals at Barcelona's expense.

The Giallorossi required a comeback that had been pulled off only twice before – including, memorably, by Barcelona last season – and took just six minutes to get the ball rolling thanks to Edin Džeko's neat control and finish.

Roma spurned a host of further first-half opportunities but deservedly doubled their lead when Daniele De Rossi converted from the spot just before the hour. Still they needed one more, though.

Kostas Manolas applied the killer blow, glancing in with his head at the near post with eight minutes remaining. Barcelona had been given a taste of their own medicine.

Edin Džeko after scoring Roma's first goal
Edin Džeko after scoring Roma's first goal©AFP/Getty Images

Key player: Edin Džeko

Džeko has scored plenty of important goals for Roma, but his contribution here has helped pen an incredible chapter in his and the Eternal City club's history. A maiden UEFA Champions League semi-final is largely down to the talismanic striker, who gave his side reason to dream and then earned the penalty which turned those dreams to reality. How much more is there still to come?

Reporter talking points

Džeko: It was incredible! Crazy!
Džeko: It was incredible! Crazy!

Ben Gladwell, Roma: Roma have just created one of the most spectacular shocks in the history of the competition. Coming back from three goals behind is not easy against anyone; to do it against Barcelona, one of the favourites to lift the trophy, is outstanding. And who is to say they did not deserve it either – not only tonight, but over the two legs. Few could argue they've been superior.

Lionel Messi and Barcelona react
Lionel Messi and Barcelona react©AFP/Getty Images

Graham Hunter, Barcelona: It'll be too easy, too simplistic if all the talk is about Barcelona's third straight exit at this stage. It would also take huge credit away from Roma. Ernesto Valverde's side are often hustled, often pressed, but it's very rare indeed that they are so completely thrown off their stride. Widely touted as winners of the tournament, they were soundly beaten here. Back to the drawing board.

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