This was an extremely dull match. The first half was some of the soporific football I have ever seen, and the second half was not much better. Shakhtar were happy to just contain Barcelona, who were themselves uninspired. The only goal came in the 115th minute.
On the stroke of half time, Barcelona had a good appeal for a penalty as a Messi free kick seemed to strike an arm. de Bleeckere ruled that it was not intentional and waved away the appeals; it was a fifty-fifty decision and I can understand why it wasn't given.
A bit of spice
At the end of normal time a bit of frustration reared its head, as Messi and Srna squared up to each other, both attempting a headbutt. While this sort of behaviour can often result in red cards, de Bleeckere simply booked both. I think that this was probably the right thing to do since both players were equally to blame and no harm was done. The referee used a fair bit of common sense in that decision.
Once again, I must praise de Bleeckere for his reading of the match; his anticipation of play is admirable and he is always in a good position to make an important decision. Furthermore, while all the players were obviously tiring in extra time, de Bleeckere was still running around like a man possessed. The first booking of the match, when Ilshino committed two fouls in a minute, was a fine example of how to control a match.