Messi apologises to the fans for Barcelona’s shock Champions League exit

Argentina international Lionel Messi has said that Barcelona are still recovering after the shock Champions League exit at the hands of Liverpool. The Blaugrana were favourites to reach the final after grabbing a 3-0 advantage at the Camp Nou but they produced a disastrous showing on the road where a 4-0 loss saw the Reds progress in their expense.

Speaking in a rare press conference, Messi said that his team are still recovering from the Champions League setback earlier in the month. He added that the Blaugrana don’t need to apologise for the defeat but rather for the failure to compete during the return leg at Anfield, he said: "We are still recovering from what happened in Liverpool. At least I am.

“Our performance was lamentable. It was a very tough loss for us. We don't have to apologize for losing, but we do for not competing. It's true that winning the double is important, but we will still have a bad feeling for that loss. We all had our focus on winning the Champions League, so the disappointment was that much greater."

Despite the disappointment, Barcelona have the opportunity to end the season on a high when they face Valencia in the Copa del Rey final. The Catalan giants sealed the league title with three games to spare earlier in the month and they have the chance to celebrate a domestic double for the second-straight season, should they get the better of Los Che.

Elsewhere, Messi has enjoyed another top season with the club and he recently bagged 50 goals for the eighth season in the past nine campaigns. As such, he remains a strong contender for the Ballon d’Or accolade, though that does not remain an assurance, considering Barcelona won’t be lifting the Champions League crown for yet another season.