The Spurs player Lionel Messi gave his shirt to after Barcelona win

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       Tottenham Hotspur are missing five key players for their crucial Champions League clash with Barcelona on Wedne

Messi would not miss again, though, sending Alba clear down the left with a trademark curling pass and timing his run into the box perfectly to slot a first-time finish past Lloris to restore Barca's two-goal lead four minutes later. He plays at another level, he scores goals, he provides assists, he runs as much as the most.

And, in case you are wondering, Messi has scored 562 goals in 647 games for Barcelona, with 105 in the Champions League.

In a dramatic second half, Tottenham's Harry Kane reduced the deficit before the majestic Messi added Barcelona's third. "He plays a different game to anyone I've ever seen and he's the greatest of all time in my book".

'It was a very hard game tonight, they have top players up front, they moved the ball a lot and we ran a lot during the first half.

Can Spurs salvage anything from this game, or have Barcelona already picked up all three points?

Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Philippe Coutinho pressed Tottenham's shaky back line early and they never stopped.

Croatia midfielder Ivan Rakitic then doubled the lead by firing home an acrobatic half-volley off the inside of the post from 20 yards.

Messi produced a gorgeous ball to send Jordi Alba scampering clear down the left channel and, with Lloris having raced out and left his goal unmarked, the left-back squared for Coutinho to tuck away his first Barca goal in the Champions League.

But question marks do remain about their ability to seriously challenge for the Champions League title this season, despite making it two wins from two to open up group play. But what the scoreline did do was set the stage for a pulsating second-half. Marc-Andre ter Stegen came up with a big save in the first half and, generally speaking, you can assume they'd still win plenty of games even if they conceded an average of one per game due to the prowess of their attack.

Messi did make the promise to his fans this very season that he will be getting the European title home, but he has also hinted that if his team continues to provide the loopholes in the game, the chances of winning the Champions League will be down the drain.

Messi then put Barca 3-1 in front at the end of another flowing move, only for Erik Lamela to pull another back for Spurs with a deflected shot from the edge of the penalty area.

Pochettino has a host of injury problems to cope with, as Christian Eriksen, Dele Alli, Jan Vertonghen, Serge Aurier and Mousa Dembele are all out.

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