Barcelona saw the ghosts of the last two seasons staring them down as they went down 0-1 against Porto at home in the first half. Pepe found a way through Iñaki Peña to give the visitors the lead in the 30th minute, and it was nothing more than what they deserved.
Two minutes later, Joao Cancelo took matters into his hand on the left-wing. Found a way through three defenders, and like a seasoned striker, finessed the ball into the bottom corner to equalise.
His performance only improved from there as he continued making marauding runs down the flank and troubling Porto’s defence. When not overlapping Felix, he was essentially controlling the game as a central midfielder.
Eventually, he found Joao Felix in the box in the second half as the Atletico Madrid man converted seamlessly, winning the game for Barcelona.
Felix may have scored the winner, but Cancelo’s performance, from left-back, was one for the books as he dropped a 10/10.
He did go off limping in the 82nd minute, though, which surely scared some Barcelona fans. Thankfully, he confirmed post the game that it was nothing more than an overload.
“I am ready to play against Atletico Madrid,” he said, as relayed by MARCA.
“When I arrived from the National Team, I had an overload in my hamstring. I will be ready to play vs Atletico Madrid, though.”
Barcelona’s qualification to the round of 16 was on the line today, and Cancelo, among others, delivered when it mattered.
“We already said that today was a final and we had to win it. We did that and put the club where it deserved to be — in the round of 16 of the Champions League.”
He also added, “When the results don’t come, confidence is no longer the same. We have a team of mature players, amazing people on a human level, and we needed this win. Now, we are already thinking about Atletico.”
Cancelo has already played a bunch of positions since joining Barcelona. Today, he was deployed on the left, where is very comfortable, owing to his time with Pep Guardiola at Manchester City.
“I’m fine in all positions. I always try to help the team. Balde also deserves to play because he is a great player. We have a bunch of great players.”