It took a while for Barca’s quality to show through, but a Messi brace almost sealed the tie for them. (AP Photo/Frank Augstein)
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Lionel Messi left Arsenal spellbound as the Barcelona striker's clinical double sealed a 2-0 last 16, first leg victory that put the Champions League holders firmly on course for the quarterfinals Tuesday. Barca coach Luis Enrique joked this week that all he needed to do was shout "Abracadabra" for Messi, Neymar and Luis Suarez to deliver the kind of magic display that would bewilder the Gunners.Messi had never scored against Cech in six encounters with the Arsenal goalkeeper during his time at Chelsea.For virtually the first time all night, Arsenal had left themselves exposed and Neymar slipped a pass to Messi, who was left all alone to plant an emphatic finish past Cech.
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