Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 September 2014

Messi strike sends Barcelona into Club World Cup final

Lionel Messi and Pedro Rodriguez shared the limelight as Barcelona hit back from an early deficit to beat Atlante in Abu Dhabi and qualify for the final of the Club World Cup and stay on track for a remarkable sixth trophy in 2009.

Messi, who has been been struggling with an ankle injury, was brought on in the 53rd minute and within 60 seconds he had put Barca 2-1 in front.

Then, 12 minutes later, Pedro sealed the win for the European champions.

The Mexican side threatened a shock upset when they took a fourth-minute lead through Guillermo Rojas, but Sergio Busquets drew Barca level in the 35th minute and those two second-half goals from Messi and Pedro earned Pep Guardiola's side a final showdown against Estudiantes on Saturday.

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