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12.01.2010 12:28

First leg defeat is something new

Marc Guillén

Under Guardiola, Barca have never before had to come back from behind in a two legged cup tie, but they have certainly shown in the past 18 months or so that they are capable of getting out of a tight spot.

Guardiola has taken the team through a total of 10 two legged ties, in both domestic and European competitions, and last week’s defeat to Seville was the first time that they had lost the first leg. Wednesday will be a new challenge for this team, but one they are surely well equipped to face.

First leg draws

Barca only failed to win the first leg twice last season, drawing 0-0 against Espanyol at the Montjuic Stadium in the quarter finals of the Spanish Cup before winning the second leg at the Nou Camp and then being held to a goalless draw at home to Chelsea in the Champions League semi-final before THAT goal from Iniesta at Stamford Bridge took them through to the final in Rome.

Plenty of character

Barca won everything last season, but it wasn’t always easy – one example of their ability to react under pressure was the Champions League Final, which they had to face without three injured defenders–Márquez, Alves and Abidal– and with Iniesta and Henry playing without being 100%

Guardiola’s team also had to show plenty of character against Lyon in the second leg of their last 16 tie in last year’s Champions League and also showed great spirit in the series of games against the big clubs in the league and in coming from behind in games such as the Cup Final.
First leg defeat is something new
This season
Although Barca have yet to play in the knock out stages this season, their last two away games in the group stage were tough enough, but the team came through when the going got tough and got a draw in Kazin and a win in Kiev.

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