Bayern Munich striker Thomas Muller delivered a damning assessment of Barcelona after his team’s comfortable 3-0 victory over Blaugrana on Wednesday night.
The result meant that Barça finished third in Group E and sent them down to the Europa League for the rest of the season. It was the latest battle in what has been a disastrous campaign for the Catalan giants.
In addition to faltering in Europe, they are also an astonishing 16 points from the pace of La Liga, and even six behind the top four. Off the field, it is just as gloomy with the club’s massive debts that lead to several top players leaving, including Lionel Messi and Antoine Griezmann.
Despite Barcelona’s struggle, Muller was not in a sympathetic mood after helping to dump them out of the Champions League.
“I think Barça can not handle the intensity. Technically, they have everything, they are fantastic players tactically and technically,” he said after the match.
“But they can’t handle the intensity of top football.”
Muller scored the opening goal of the match and turned in Robert Lewandowski’s post with a sly nod. Leroy Sane then made it 2-0 before the break, with his thunderous effort from a distance that beat Marc-Andre ter Stegen’s weak wrists.
Jamal Musiala put the game beyond all doubt on the hour line and beat Alphonso Davies’ cut.
Barcelona are now waiting for which of the continent’s second team clubs they will face in the first knockout round of the Europa League.
Full-time, Xavi did not hide his frustration at leaving the Champions League at the first hurdle.
“I’m angry,” Xavi said. “This is the reality and it pisses me off. We have to deal with that face. There is nothing else for it. A new era begins today. We start from scratch.
“I have seen a very harsh reality, unfortunately I sometimes also lived as a player and what I have said to the players we do not have to make up, we have to reveal ourselves. It is difficult to assume it but that is what it is and we must start from the beginning.
“I was hoping we would compete better, but we have to be honest and we miss a lot of things. They [Bayern] have been better, superior and even though we have tried and pushed hard, they have submitted to us, contrary to what we want and this is the harsh reality. “
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