In a thrilling encounter at the UEFA Champions League, Barcelona’s quest to secure their spot in the knockout stages was delayed by a resilient Shakhtar Donetsk side. Despite Barcelona’s dominance in possession, it was Shakhtar who drew first blood in a surprising turn of events. Giorgi Gocholeishvili’s precise cross found Danylo Sikan, who expertly headed the ball past the outstretched Marc-André ter Stegen to give Shakhtar the lead.
Barcelona, clearly stung by the setback, emerged rejuvenated after halftime. Ferran Torres came close to equalizing with a curling effort that narrowly missed the target. However, Shakhtar remained a threat on the counter, with Ter Stegen denying Sikan his second goal of the day. Manager Xavi made strategic substitutions, but Shakhtar’s steadfast defense frustrated Barcelona’s attempts to find the back of the net.
Shakhtar’s young talent, 18-year-old Newerton, almost extended their lead with a magnificent curling strike, but his celebration was cut short by the assistant referee’s flag. Despite a frantic seven minutes of stoppage time, Shakhtar held on for a historic victory over the Spanish giants. This triumph catapults Shakhtar Donetsk back into contention for qualification, leaving Barcelona to regroup and refocus for their upcoming challenges in the Champions League.