Chelsea midfielder Frank Lampard praised his team's "never say die" attitude following the Blues' stunning performance at the Camp Nou on Tuesday night, which saw them fight to a 2-2 draw, despite being down to ten men for most of the game.
The result, following from the 1-0 first leg win for Chelsea, means Barcelona have been eliminated from this season's Champions League, after losing 2-3 on aggregate.
"It's one of the finest moments in a Chelsea shirt. I know people want to see beautiful football but with 10 men to play for 50 minutes and to be 2-0 down here and to perform like that - what spirit. Unbelievable. That clock wasn't half slow in the second half. There was a determination about us and you get what you deserve and we were all in it together. And what a fantastic result," Mirror Football quoted Lampard as saying.
The London club were trailing by two goals and losing 1-2 on aggregate when Brazilian midfielder Ramires, who engineered Chelsea's first leg win over the Catalans, restored his side's aggregate advantage with a stunning goal in first half stoppage time.
After that the Blues, with help from the woodwork which twice stopped Lionel Messi, managed to defend their aggregate lead until £50 million Spanish striker Fernando Torres put an end to Barca's hopes of reaching the finals with a brilliant strike in the 90<sup>th minute.
Chelsea captain John Terry was earlier shown a straight red after kneeing Chilean forward Alexis Sanchez in the back; the skipper later apologised to his teammates in the dressing room after initially denying being guilty of the offence.
"I have apologised to the lads and I apologise to the Chelsea fans. I was trying to protect myself but I feel I've let them down. I've seen a replay and it looks like a red card. I'm not that sort of player. It does look bad on the replay. I did raise my knee. Sanchez was darting in behind me," the Daily Mail quoted Terry as saying.
"At the time, I was bewildered, but looking at it on the replay, I've no complaints. I've let the lads down. They've performed brilliantly, so hopefully this doesn't take it away from the players. This is what this football club deserves. The boys were excellent," he added.
Meanwhile, although Roberto Di Matteo, the club's interim manager had earlier warned his squad about disciplinary issues, he remained supportive of his captain.
"He's a fantastic leader of this group and captain of the club. Everyone can make a mistake in life. We are just so happy we managed to go to the final. We are all human beings and all make mistakes," Di Matteo was quoted by the Daily Mail as saying.
The red card aside, Di Matteo emphasised his pleasure over the draw and said he believed his players played excellent football despite the criticism; he cited difficulty of the game and the tight situation the club found themselves in.
"It was incredible - so many events happened in the game. I'm very happy and pleased for the players because they deserve this moment. We've had a difficult season and it seems we always get something special out when we need to - it is part of the DNA of these players," said Di Matteo, according to a Sun report. He did admit that luck did play a crucial part in their win.
"We had a bit of luck as well which you need to win the trophy, "he added.
The bad news for Di Matteo, though, is Chelsea will miss Serbian defender Branislav Ivanovic, Ramires and Portuguese midfielder Raul Meireles (through suspension because of the accumulation of yellow cards), as well Terry, for the final scheduled to be held in Munich, Germany.