Barcelona Could Have Advanced in the UEFA Champions League Without Scoring

The importance of the legendary Barcelona striker Own Goal

Barcelona could have advanced out of their UEFA Champions League group without scoring, had all other things remained the same. This is, of course, a hypothetical, but it’s fun to think about because it underlines two things: (1) Barça were extremely solid defensively and (2) Barcelona benefitted from a lot of own goals.

In a Reddit post, _BigT_ put forth the hypothetical table:

Fixtures without Barcelona players scoring.

FCB vs JUV T 0-0

FCB at SCP W 1-0

FCB vs OLY T 1-1

FCB at OLY T 0-0

FCB at JUV T 0-0

FCB vs SCP W 1-0

New table

1. JUV 12

2. FCB 10

3. SCP 7

4. OLY 2

Barcelona’s 3-0 victory over Juventus would become a 0-0, but their 1-0 win over Sporting thanks to an own goal would have been intact. Their 3-1 victory over Olympiacos would become a 1-1 draw, thanks to an own goal. The 0-0 draws with Olympiacos and Juventus would remain. And their 2-0 triumph over Sporting in the last matchday would still be a win, albeit by a margin of 1-0, thanks to an own goal.

With 10 points, Barça would advance despite never actually scoring a goal. Of course, the results wouldn’t play the same way had these changes happen, so this is pure conjecture.

Still, it’s really funny to think about.