TURIN – Barcelona allowed themselves the luxury of starting with Lionel Messi on the bench and still held out for a 0-0 draw at Juventus to reach the last-16 of the Champions League on Wednesday.
Barcelona, who brought on Messi early in the second half, enjoyed long spells of possession, but used it as a defensive tactic to stop Juventus attacking rather than creating chances themselves.
Juve were lacklustre, with forward Gonzalo Higuain barely getting a look-in.
They nearly snatched a win in stoppage time, but Paulo Dybala’s low shot from the edge of the area was turned around the post by goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen.
The Serie A side, who are second in Group D, will qualify for the last-16 unless they lose at Olympiakos in their final game next month and Sporting beat Barcelona away.
Sporting kept alive their own hopes by beating Olympiakos 3-1 in Lisbon in the other group game, with Bas Dost scoring twice.
Bruno Cesar was also on target for Sporting and Vadis Odjidja-Ofoe scored a late consolation for the Greeks, who were eliminated.
Barcelona, 3-0 winners over Juve in their previous meeting in the group, have 11 points and are guaranteed to finish top. Juve are on eight, Sporting on seven and Olympiakos on one.
Meanwhile, Neymar was back in the mood, with the Brazilian scoring twice to set up Paris Saint-Germain’s comeback from behind as they hammered a shell-shocked Celtic 7-1.
Moussa Dembele had put the visitors ahead inside a minute at the Parc des Princes, but Neymar’s brace soon turned the game around, and both Edinson Cavani and Kylian Mbappe added goals of their own before the interval.
Marco Verratti made it five with a quarter-of-an-hour left, before Cavani got his second and a sensational Dani Alves hit wrapped up the French giants’ biggest win in the competition.
Already through to the last-16 before this game, they will look to clinch top spot in Group B ahead of Bayern Munich when they travel to Germany for their final outing next month.
Champions League Results
Basel 1-0 Manchester United
Juventus 0-0 Barcelona
Qarabag 0-4 Chelsea
CSKA Moscow 2-0 Benfica
Anderlecht 1-2 Bayern Munich
Atletico Madrid 2-0 Roma
PSG 7-1 Celtic
Sporting 3-1 Olympiakos