Barcelona stars looked dejected on Saturday morning after their Champions League humiliation as Lionel Messi and Co. left their Lisbon hotel following their Bayern Munich hammering.
The five-time champions suffered their heaviest defeat in decades as the Germans ran riot in Portugal in what could be a landmark moment for the Spanish club, who have endured turmoil both on and off the pitch this season.
Coach Quique Setien is expected to be dismissed very shortly following the abysmal performance, while Gerard Pique has said that the club needs a total rebuild in order to compete among the elite again.
The squad made a very sombre public appearance on Saturday as they left their hotel in Lisbon, with Messi, Pique and Antoine Griezmann all cutting dejected figures as they made their way to the team coach.
Last night, several Barcelona fans waited outside the hotel to express their anger at the team for the embarrassing performance, while Spanish newspapers have been united in slamming the quarter final result.
It is rare for sports papers in Catalonia and in the rest of Spain to agree on a headline but both Barcelona-based Diario Sport and Madrid-based Diario AS went with ’Historic Humiliation’ front pages on Saturday morning.
Spain is reeling after the quarter-final results left it without a representative in the semi-finals for the first time in 13 years but all the focus was on the impending upheaval at chaos club Barcelona.
AS said Bayern had ‘flattened a pathetic’ rival that currently exists in a state of ‘painful ridicule’ and in one opinion piece Sport said that Bayern had ‘ridiculed Barcelona on a nightmare evening’.
In its player ratings only Luis Suarez and Jordi Alba were giving marks as the rest were graded zero.
And Sport’s verdict on Setien’s performance was headlined ‘Sacked’ in anticipation of what will inevitably happen to the 61-year-old.
Its analysis continued: ‘He cannot last not even one more day in the job. The task has been far too big for him. He has nothing to offer.’
Fans gathered outside the hotel to make their feelings known with AS reporting some screamed ‘scoundrels’ as the players received a hostile reception after returning from the match.
Pique was very frank in his assessment of the club’s status following their embarrassing exit on Friday night.
‘It was a horrible performance and it leaves us with a terrible feeling,’ said the defender. ‘We have hit rock bottom.’
‘We feel embarrassed. You can’t compete as we have done tonight. This is very hard to take.’
Referring to previous European disasters against PSG, Roma and last year against Liverpool he said: ‘And it’s not the first time, it’s not the second time, or the third time.
‘The clubs need changes and I’m not talking about the coach or any one player. The club needs profound change. We have hit rock bottom. We need to reflect and do what is best for the club.’