UEFA Champions League

November 4, 2009


FK Rubin Kazan

0 - 0


Group F

17:30 +00:00, November 4, 2009

Central Stadium Kazan

Referee: Konrad Plautz

  • 93'

    Thanks for joining us and stick with ESPN Soccernet for the report and post-match reaction.

  • 93'

    It's all over! Barca fail to find a way through and it could have been even worse for the champions as Rubin had several attempts to steal it.

  • 92'

    Dominguez leads another Rubin attack, but Alves and co gather round to force him off the ball.

  • 91'

    Two minutes of injury time to be played.

  • 91'

    Yellow card for goalkeeper Ryzhikov for time wasting.

  • 91'

    We're into injury time now.

  • 90'

    Dominguez races away and nearly finds the killer pass, but he holds on too long and the chance is lost! At the other end, Henry loses his balance and fires well wide from inside the area!

  • 88'

    Henry passes up a great chance! Alves sends over a cross and, after the defence fail to deal with it, it falls at his feet right in front of goal, but he's caught unawares and it bounces to the keeper!

  • 88'

    Cesar heads the corner over the bar! Rubin look the more likely to win it at the moment...

  • 87'

    Dominguez sends a superb free-kick in and any header from a Rubin attacker could have done the damage, but Barca get it away for a corner.

  • 86'

    Bukharov does brilliantly to take the ball in his own half and dribble half the length of the pitch to relieve the pressure.

  • 84'

    Henry nearly makes an instant impact, curling in for Ibrahimovic at the back post, but the defender gets there first.

  • 82'

    Barca withdraw Keita for Henry. An attacking gamble from Guardiola, who appears not to be too worried by Rubin's recent attacking breakthroughs.

  • 81'

    Barca are holding onto the ball again but have less than ten minutes to make it count. Sharanov puts in a crunching tackle on Messi.

  • 79'

    The corner is wasted and Barca break away.

  • 78'

    Rubin come very, very close! Bukharov goes clean through but Valdes just gets there first! Ryazantsev picks up the rebound but Puyol clears up for a corner!

  • 77'

    Rubin are starting look much more open at the back now they're committing men to attack. They could easily lose this if they continue to press forwards.

  • 76'

    Rubin are starting to show a bit more attacking intent, with Dominguez at the heart of it.

  • 74'

    Puyol picks up a yellow for fouling Bukharov.

  • 74'

    A golden chance for Bukharov! He gets behind the defence and chests the ball but can't get his shot away and Valdes gathers! Great pass from Dominguez.

  • 74'

    Ibrahimovic fires the free-kick on target, but it's straight at the keeper.

  • 73'

    Rubin lose possession again and, as Barca break away, Semak picks up a yellow card for a cynical foul on Messi.

  • 72'

    Keita fires well over from distance. Barca are still trying to turn up the pressure, but there's still no end product.

  • 71'

    Iniesta nearly finds Messi in space in the area, but the defender gets a toe in.

  • 70'

    Dominguez has a bit of space to get a shot on goal from the edge of the area, but he drags it wide.

  • 69'

    Ryazantsez beats his man but again misplaces the pass.

  • 68'

    Dominguez wastes the free-kick, curling it high onto the top of the goal.

  • 68'

    Pique looks to have been fouled by Bukharov but the ref gives it the other way.

  • 67'

    Xavi tries a desperate long-range effort. As the English sides have discovered, Barca tend to struggle against defensive displays in Europe and tonight is no exception.

  • 66'

    A couple of mistimed challenges nearly allow Alves through, but he still loses out. Superb team defending tonight from the hosts.

  • 65'

    The corner eventually goes from left to right, but Alves' cross is easily dealt with.

  • 64'

    Iniesta finds Messi on the edge of the area but, after a burst of pace, he finds himself wide of the goal and has to settle for a corner.

  • 62'

    Gokdeniz comes off for Bukharov, the side's joint top scorer.

  • 61'

    Thierry Henry and Alesandr Bukharov look set to be introduced.

  • 60'

    Ibrahimovic may feel he was blocked off there as the ball was there to be won on the edge of the area, but Sharanov clears.

  • 59'

    Another Rubin counter breaks down due to a lack of numbers.

  • 58'

    Kaleshin wastes possession again as Rubin look to break away.

  • 57'

    Barca apply some more pressure, with Iniesta swinging a cross in and Messi nearly getting a break, but still they can't make it count.

  • 57'

    The crowd have piped up now. Barca in possession.

  • 55'

    Poor pass from Messi as he looks for Alves out wide. Barca have looked far better in the last few minutes, though.

  • 54'

    Ibrahimovic looks to work some space on the edge of the area, but his cross is gathered easily by the keeper as no one gambles on it.

  • 53'

    Iniesta gets a shot away after a one-two with Xavi, but it's off target. Much better from Barca, though.

  • 52'

    Xavi fires in a shot and Ryzhikov makes a mess of the save, but he's rescued by his defenders.

  • 52'

    Messi finally tries something different, beating two men before finding Ibrahimovic, but it's cleared.

  • 51'

    Xavi's throughball is easily dealt with by Cesar. There's a lack of inspiration about Barca at the moment.

  • 50'

    Ibrahimovic picks up on a loose pass and feeds Iniesta, but he's quickly closed down. If Rubin can keep this defensive pressure up, Barca will have problems.

  • 49'

    Messi tries to spark something but, again, his throughball is easily dealt with. He looks to be lacking ideas in that position tonight.

  • 48'

    Abidal tries to break into the area but, after a loose piece of control, the ball is smashed unceremoniously away.

  • 47'

    Pique gives Gokdeniz a kick and is lucky to escape a yellow.

  • 46'

    Alves sends in a deep cross, which is easily gathered by the keeper.

  • 46'

    The second half is underway! Let's hope for more interest this time around.

  • 46'

    It's half-time in Russia and Barca have been frustrated in the opening half. Rubin will need to do more in the second period to survive, though.

  • 46'

    We're into injury time at the end of the first half.

  • 45'

    Ibrahimovic battles through and, as he gets a lucky break, hits a first-time shot straight at the keeper. Ibra's been Barca's star man so far.

  • 43'

    Alves puts the ball into the box but the keeper claims confidently.

  • 42'

    Iniesta has a glorious chance! Ibrahimovic catches Rubin off-guard with a clever free-kick and Iniesta blasts straight at Ryzhikov.

  • 40'

    Rubin come close! They break away on the counter and Valdes struggles to make the save from Ryazantsez out on the right!

  • 40'

    Rubin battle to clear the ball and Semak clears for a throw-in.

  • 39'

    Barca win a corner as Keita's cross deflects away.

  • 38'

    Rubin enjoy a short spell of possession before Toure wins the ball back. Dominguez looks like the only man who can lead a successful counter for the hosts.

  • 37'

    Xavi, wearing full-on tights, curls it in but it's easily dealt with.

  • 36'

    The first effort is retaken due to a moving ball.

  • 35'

    Cesar brings down Ibrahimovic and Barca have a free-kick.

  • 33'

    Messi beats two men and tries to find Ibrahimovic with a ball round the back, but it's easily cut out. They're lacking the final ball still.

  • 33'

    Rubin's passing hasn't been good enough. They need to hold onto the ball when they win it back or this is going to turn unpleasant for them.

  • 32'

    Still no way through for Barca. Rubin are making life very hard indeed for the visitors, although it's not making for a great spectacle right now.

  • 31'

    Dominguez bursts past Alves and Puyol into the area, but Barca swarm on him and the attack breaks down.

  • 30'

    Barca are still controlling possession just inside the Rubin half.

  • 28'

    Rubin are defending well and, although they have looked vulnerable at times, their organisation is working well.

  • 27'

    Barca win a free-kick in the middle of the pitch as Messi goes down.

  • 26'

    Messi bursts into life and attempts a shot from 30 yards, but it bobbles as he strikes it and goes wide.

  • 25'

    The corner is cleared to the edge of the area but no one is there to take advantage.

  • 24'

    Kaleshin centres the ball for Gokdeniz, but he miscues with a wall of defenders ahead of him and has to settle for a corner.

  • 24'

    Alves, out on the right, crosses in for Keita on the left, but he can't make decent contact at the far post and it goes out for a goal kick.

  • 23'

    Barca are knocking the ball around in midfield and defence again, building another attack.

  • 22'

    Noboa tries a throughball for the hosts but it doesn't come off and Barca break away, with Messi again unable to get a shot away in the area.

  • 21'

    Messi goes close! Ibrahimovic chests the ball down in the area and plays Messi in cleverly, but he's eventually crowded out and Ryzhikov gathers.

  • 20'

    Alves curls a deep cross into the box, but Ansaldi is there to head away.

  • 19'

    Xavi attempts a precise chip over goalkeeper Ryzhikov, but it's just over the bar. Rubin went in for some rash tackles there and allowed Barca some space.

  • 17'

    Barca put the ball into the box but it's headed away well by Cesar.

  • 16'

    Salukyadze tries to put a cross in from out on the right, but his cross is blocked and he then puts it out for a goal kick.

  • 15'

    Argentinean attacker Dominguez breaks free for Rubin and shows some skill before eventually being denied.

  • 14'

    Puyol makes an excellent intervention as Gokdeniz tries to get onto a throughball.

  • 13'

    Kaleshin shuts down Alves as Barca start to look frustrated.

  • 12'

    Rubin just can't get out of their own half at the moment. Barca aren't doing much with the possession right now though.

  • 10'

    Sharanov is down injured and the stretcher comes on, but he doesn't need it and should be able to continue.

  • 9'

    Rubin relieve the pressure with a big punt upfield. Barca look completely on top and really should be ahead.

  • 9'

    Ibrahimovic tries to wind his way through several players but is blocked off.

  • 7'

    Speaking of cold, the conditions look freezing and there are reports Rubin have allowed the grass to grow long to stop Barca playing their passing game.

  • 6'

    Gokdenix is flagged offside as Rubin try to catch Barca cold.

  • 5'

    Keita tries a speculative effort but it misses the target.

  • 4'

    Barca are asserting their dominance in the centre of the park despite the ill-suited conditions.

  • 3'

    Rubin finally go on the attack and Gokdeniz searches for an opening as he approaches the area, but it comes to nothing.

  • 3'

    Ibrahimovic hits the post! Iniesta plays him through for a one-on-one, but he fails to hit the target.

  • 2'

    Another Barca corner is cleared.

  • 1'

    Iniesta tries a shot as the ball comes out from the corner, but he fails to make strong contact.

  • 1'

    Barca try an early attack with a ball through for Ibrahimovic, but it's out for a corner.

  • 1'

    We're underway!


    The teams are out on the pitch and it looks mightily cold.


    Wondering about the hosts? Try this link: http://soccernet.espn.go.com/columns/story?id=693212&sec=uefachampionsleague&root=uefachampionsleague&cc=5739


    Barcelona: Valdes, Puyol, Pique, Abidal, Alves, Toure, Keita, Xavi, Iniesta, Ibrahimovic, Messi


    Rubin: Ryzhikov, Cesar, Sharonov, Ansaldi, Salukvadze, Noboa, Semak, Kaleshin, Ryazantsev, Dominguez, Gokdeniz


    The line-ups are in...


    Hello and welcome to our live commentary as Barcelona look for revenge against Rubin Kazan in Russia.