Manchester City 0 Barcelona 2: Cesc Fabregas says critics, who include Jose Mourinho, can now 'shut up'

Some have levelled that the Catalan club are not the force they were, including the Chelsea manager

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The Independent Football

Cesc Fabregas sent a retort to Barcelona's critics after his side's victory over Manchester City last night, saying they can “shut up”.

Ahead of last night's Champions League last-16 first leg, some suggested that Barcelona are not the force they once were.

Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho was among them, claiming that City were due to face "the worst Barcelona of many many years".

However, their passing style and patience paid dividends against mega-rich Manchester City and they left the Etihad with a 2-0 win thanks to goals from Lionel Messi and Dani Alves to all but end the tie and guarantee a place in the quarter-finals.

"Maybe we had to prove a point in a way," said Fabregas after the match. "I think we did it and I think we did it in a style and very, very well, but this team has done so much and won so much to always have to prove a point.

"But today was one of those days maybe everyone was saying Barcelona was not the same Barcelona... some people were talking a bit too much and as usual they will have to shut up for a few days.

"We are top of the league, we had a good result and we are in the final of the [Copa del Rey]. There's nothing else you can ask for.

"But the fans in Spain in general put the most pressure on you as a team - the fans and everyone - and that's what makes everyone feel so special to this team."

Barcelona head coach Tata Martino refused to get carried away by the first-leg result which turned when Martin Demichelis gave away a penalty for which he was sent off.


Martino also pointed out that City had beaten Bayern Munich away from home in the group stage.

"I am not confident but we have had a good game away from home and we just have to repeat the same performance," he said.

"We must not forget that City lost to Bayern Munich at home and then they won away."

He also refused to be drawn on Mourinho's criticism, saying: "What people say outside games is just a waste of time. We just have to play well in every competition."