'Miracle needed' as Bayern rout Barca
Spanish giants face probable exit from the Champions League as they are left stunned by a four-goal salvo in the first leg of semi-final tie
Barcelona's assistant coach Jordi Roura has admitted his side need a miracle at the Camp Nou in the return leg after being hammered 4-0 at Bayern Munich in the Champions League semi-final, first leg.
Bayern are on the verge of their third Champions League final in four years after goals by German midfielder Thomas Muller, striker Mario Gomez and Dutch wing Arjen Robben floored Barca at Munich's Allianz Arena on Tuesday.
It was the Spanish giants worst Champions League defeat since the 1997 group stage 4-0 loss to Dynamo Kiev.
Barcelona's Argentinian superstar Lionel Messi started, despite struggling with a hamstring injury since the start of the month, but the world player of the year was a shadow of his self.
"They demonstrated they are stronger than us, they beat us in all departments," said Messi.
"I couldn't do much to alter the result, which was a shame.
"It will be hard at the Camp Nou, but we have to go for it."
Roura, though, accepted that his side faced a task that could prove even beyond them.
"Miracles are always hard to make real, 4-0 is a huge deficit to make up," he said.
"I don't know if anyone has come back from a score like that in the history of the Champions League, but we'll do what we can.
"This is a big defeat which hurts us a lot."
There were furious protests from the visitors when referee Robert Kispal failed to spot Muller's body-check on Jordi Alba as Robben scored Bayern's third goal on 73 minutes, but defender Gerard Pique said Barcelona were well beaten by a better team.
"They thrashed us," admitted the centre-back.
"The referee didn't have an influence. It is almost impossible for us, but we have to show some face in the return-leg.
"They were quicker, stronger and better."
Bayern, who are bidding to become the first German team to win the treble of European, league and cup titles, were buoyant after finding themselves on the verge of the Wembley final on May 25.
"That's crazy, hard to believe," said Robben.
"They've dominated Europe in the last few years and then we go and win 4-0.
"The key was we fought and defended together."
But Bayern coach Jupp Heynckes warned the job is only half done.
"Of course, we're all very happy about the win, especially the size of the margin. We were first-class," he said.
"But we know we still have 90 minutes ahead of us in Spain.
"We want to enjoy tonight, but nothing more."
An exceptional day for Bayern got off to an unusual start when it was announced they had signed young German star Mario Goetze from arch-rivals Borussia Dortmund for a reported €37 million (HK$374 million).
Then it was reported that in March club president Uli Hoeness, caught up in a tax evasion scandal, was arrested and released on bail after a police raid on his home, but he was at the Allianz Arena to witness an incredible night.