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End of an era: When was the last time Barcelona competed in the Champions League without Messi on their roster

Barcelona is no longer what it used to be. The departure of Messi from the team ended up destroying what had once been formed. End of an era?

Lionel Messi
Lionel Messi

It is difficult to remember the team without its banner during the last decade and a half and that is because much of the history of the Barça team has been written thanks to La Pulga. The Argentine striker made his debut in an official match with the first team in the 04/05 season and since then the Barça team embarked on its most prolific stage in titles. But what was Barcelona like without Messi?

On October 16, 2004, Lionel Messi made his debut in an official match with the Barça team. It was Frank Rikjaard who gave him the alternative in a Catalan derby against Espanyol. Then, the Argentine became the youngest Barça squad player to make his debut in an official match. By then they already sensed that that footballer would break all kinds of records but they did not imagine even remotely how the history and track record of the Barça team would change.

Of the 26 leagues that appear in Barcelona's record, ten have been won with Leo Messi on the squad. It should be said that the conquest in 2004/2005, the first since 98/99, occurred in the same year that the Argentine debuted in an official match with Barça. He barely participated in six games, but it could be said that he touched the team with his magic wand after a long period in which the Catalans were deprived of the prize for consistency.

In the Champions League, Barcelona boasted a single Orejona in their showcases. With Leo Messi, four more arrived (2005-06, 2008-09, 2010-11, 2014-15) and three Club World Cups. Of the 30 King's Cups that are in the Barca record, six also appear in the personal credit of Rosario. Today, outside the club, everything indicates that Barcelona will never again achieve what he achieved with him.

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