Barcelona want to know how 30,000 Frankfurt fans gained access to Camp Nou
Barcelona have opened an investigation into just how it was possible for 30,000 Eintracht Frankfurt fans to gain access to the Camp Nou for Thursday's Europa League quarter-final tie.
The Blaugrana had provided the 5,000 tickets mandated by UEFA to their German opponents, yet it quickly became apparent that there were far more than that supporting Frankfurt inside the stadium.
At this early stage there are several theories as to why this happened
The 5,000 tickets that Frankfurt were given by Barcelona were used in a legitimate manner and the travelling supporters with those official tickets made there way into the designated away section of the stadium.
Tour operators are understood to have taken advantage of the vast number of Frankfurt fans wanting tickets for the match, with it clear there was an organisational setup to ensure lots more Germans were inside.
It was striking that below the designated away section, the seated area was full of German-speaking fans, which would be only possible through bulk sales run by a tour operator.
Barcelona erroneously sold Germans tickets
It's no secret that attendance at the Camp Nou has been poor this year, with fans not exactly clamouring to see Los Cules play, especially not in a secondary competition like the Europa League.
With this in mind, Barcelona will have been pleased to see a vast increase in general sale interest for tickets on Thursday, yet were too slow to block the sale once it became apparent German fans were buying the tickets in bulk.
After finally installing an IP identification software which blocked the online sale of tickets to German computers, the damage was done and many tickets had already been sold and sent to Frankfurt fans.
Barcelona fans selling their tickets
This follows on from the point about Barcelona's poor ticket sales this year, with it clear that many season ticket holders weren't interested in attending a Europa League game, and sold their tickets to Frankfurt supporters.
Barcelona's nightmare night: Camp Nou turned white, whistles, miscalculation and elimination
The Camp Nou was filled with as many as 30,000 Eintracht Frankfurt supporters, which turned the stadium white and even saw the Barcelona players whistled from the warm-ups onwards.
Joan Laporta spoke about this at full time and the president was angry.
"I am worried because what happened was embarrassing and it cannot happen again," he said.
"We have information about what happened, but we need time to process it.
"We are going to take action because it is outrageous and shameful."
The situation left the club's members outraged, with a number of them even calling for the club president to resign.
Barcelona. Eintracht Frankfurt end Barcelona's Europa League adventure
Barcelona. Four cup exits in one season for Barcelona
Thursday night was disastrous for Barcelona, as the club were knocked out of the Europa League at the quarter-final stage by Eintracht Frankfurt. However, it was not only the events on the pitch that were so disappointing the the Blaugrana.
Xavi and Barcelona's major problem is at the right-back position
Barcelona. Four cup exits in one season for Barcelona
Barcelona. Hamstring injury means Pedri is set to miss the rest of the season
When Gerard Pique was ruled out of Barcelona's second leg with Eintracht Frankfurt through injury, it was a clear warning sign for the Blaugrana. His absence had a domino effect on his side's defence, in a match which highlighted just how much Barcelona need to sign a right-back in the summer.
This particular chain of events began with the club's decision not to register Dani Alves for the Europa League squad and to have Sergino Dest and Sergi Roberto instead.
However, Dest has just returned from injury and Sergi Roberto is still out with injury, meaning that the natural replacement would be Ronald Araujo.
But, with Pique sidelined, Xavi deployed Araujo at centre-back and brought in Oscar Mingueza, who had played just 11 minutes in the last month before the match on Thursday night.
Eintracht Frankfurt preyed on this weakness time and time again as they secured their place in the Europa League semi-finals, but Xavi was unwilling to blame Mingueza for the defeat.
"I don't think that he played badly," Xavi said at full time.
"We were not knocked out because of one player.
"We didn't play well as a team in the first or second leg."
It is clear that the Barcelona club hierarchy need to sign a right-back ahead of next season, especially given that Sergi Roberto is no closer to penning a new contract.
Although Dani Alves looks set to stay at the club this summer alongside Dest, Barcelona need a solid and reliable right-back that they have not had since Dani Alves himself left in 2016.
Hamstring injury means Pedri is set to miss the rest of the season
Pedri is set to miss the rest of the 2021/22 season after he suffered a rupture in his left biceps femoris against Eintracht Frankfurt on Thursday night.
The Barcelona midfielder had to come off at half time at the Camp Nou and Barcelona released a statement on Friday morning.
"Tests on Friday morning have revealed that Pedri has ruptured the femoral biceps in his left hamstring," the club said.
"It means he will be unavailable for selection until he recovers from the injury."
The club have not specified the time frame on the 21-year-old's injury, but he looks set to be out of action for at least a month. With Barcelona's season ending on the weekend of May 22, his season could already be over.
With Barcelona likely having nothing left to play for at that point, Xavi Hernandez won't want to risk him given the injury struggles that he faced in the first half of the season.
Pedri was out for over two months at the end of 2021 and made his long-awaited return in January, before enjoying a stunning second half of the season.
Barcelona 2-3 Eintracht Frankfurt: Goals and highlights - Europa League 21/22
Barcelona are looking to make it to the semi finals of the Europa League on Thursday when they face Eintracht Frankfurt at the Camp Nou. The pair played out a 1-1 draw in Germany in the first leg and the Catalans will be confident that they can secure a win in the deciding match just as they did against Napoli and Galatasaray in the previous rounds. Stay with us here on the live blog for all the pre-match build-up and then minute-by-minute updates from Barcelona vs Eintracht Frankfurt.
Barcelona vs Eintracht Frankfurt FULL TIME : 2-3
This is the very beginning of our Barcelona vs Eintracht Frankfurt live blog, as we bring you all the updates from this Thursday evening meeting at the Camp Nou.
Barcelona are out of the Europa League. Eintracht Frankfurt were the better side on the night and deservedly go through. The Catalans were slow to get going while the Germans showed intensity throughout.