Barcelona goalkeeper Marc-Andre ter Stegen says he declined to celebrate Lionel Messi’s second goal against Manchester United out of sympathy for David de Gea.
The Spaniard allowed the Argentine’s tame effort from outside the box slip underneath his arms in the European Cup quarter-final second leg at Camp Nou, which gifted Ernesto Valverde’s side a 2-0 lead.
Messi opened the scoring after 16 minutes on Tuesday night with a brilliant solo effort, but his second goal four minutes later is destined to go down in history for De Gea’s uncharacteristic error.
Speaking to Spanish radio station Cadena COPE, Ter Stegen admitted that he could not celebrate Messi’s double because of the empathy he felt for De Gea.
“The truth is that it took me a while to celebrate the goal,” he said.
“He plays in the same position as me and so I shared his pain.”
The Blaugrana number one also revealed that he consoled De Gea after the final whistle, adding: “I told him that we are all human and the second goal could have happened to me.
“Life goes on.”