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Added June 8th, 2015 by Ian

Barcelona wins record second treble with Champions League triumph

The European football season has finally come to an end, at least for the club teams, as Spanish La Liga champions Barcelona downed Italian Serie A kings Juventus 3-1 in the European Champions League Final at the Olympiastadion in Berlin, Germany on June 6. It wasn’t a bad game as far as Champions League finals go, but it certainly wasn’t a classic either. Barcelona achieved their second European treble with the win as they also took the Spanish league and the Spanish Cup (Copa Del Rey) this season. The first time they won a treble was in the 2008/09 campaign. Juventus were also going for a treble of their own as they also won their domestic league and cup.

Croatian international Ivan Rakitic opened the scoring for Barcelona in just the fourth minute of play with the fourth-quickest goal in a European Cup Final. However, Juventus kept pushing in the second half and Alvaro Morata leveled the game after 55 minutes. Uruguayan international striker Luis Suarez put the Spanish side back in front after 68 minutes and Brazilian international striker Neymar scored an insurance marker with the last kick of the contest in the 97th minute to sew up the win. The only forward who didn’t score for Barcelona was Argentine international striker Lionel Messi, but it didn’t really matter as the trio of Messi, Neymar and Suarez finished the season with a combined 122 goals between them. If Messi had scored though, he would have been the first player to score in three Champions League Finals.

It was Barcelona’s fifth European Championship, with four of them coming in the Champions League. Juventus has now lost a record six European Cup Finals and have been beaten in four straight. They were looking to win their third European crown, but will now have to wait at least one more year. Juventus’ 37-year-old Italian international goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon made several fine saves to keep Juventus in the game in the first half and the Italian side then took control in the second stanza.

Barcelona’s Suarez scored on the counterattack though and it looked like Neymar had made it 3-1 shortly afterwards, but his goal was disallowed as he headed the ball downwards and it deflected into the net past Buffon after it struck the striker’s hand. Neymar made up for it though when he added the final goal of the match. The win was the 25th trophy for Spanish international Xavi Hernandez and it was also his final game for Barcelona as the 35-year old will play the next three seasons with Al Sadd in Qatar after spending his entire career with Barca, joining the club when he was just 11 years of age.

The win was also the fourth Champions League triumph for Xavi, which ties him for first overall with four others. In addition, it was Xavi’s 151st Champions League appearance, which is a record. Barcelona is now the first team to win the European Cup treble twice with several teams achieving it once. These are Ajax Amsterdam, Glasgow Celtic, PSV Eindhoven, Bayern Munich, Manchester United and Inter Milan.

 
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