PSG eliminated by Man United, but it’s not new for the Paris-based club!

PSG eliminated by Man United, but it's not new for the Paris-based club!

PSG got eliminated on Wednesday by Manchester United, has written a new chapter in the history of incredible comebacks in the Champions League and, again, they were the victim, as against Barcelona in 2017. 


An air of deja-vu and a shocking scenario, as PSG were knocked out on Wednesday by Manchester United (3-1 on the return) despite their lead (2-0 in the first leg ), again collapsed in the last moments of a crucial match, leaving for the third time in a row the Champions League in the last-16 stage.

“Excuse us, that’s the only word I can find right now, it’s hard to explain, to talk to sad supporters, to our families who are there,” said Captain Thiago Silva after the match. ” It’s unacceptable, we understand the anger of our supporters, again at the same time of the season, we made the same mistakes … It’s unacceptable to do the match we did,” responded Marquinhos. This is a new chapter in the history of incredible leaps in the Champions League, but this kind of heartbreak is not unknown to PSG.

The cruelest: PSG vs Manchester United (2-0, 3-1)

Manchester United coach Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had pointed out the day before in the Champions League, “the results are sometimes strange”. He had to believe in the “strange” forces to hope for a feat for Man Utd, with a dozen players injured and Paul Pogba suspended, the “Red Devils” were nothing demonic when going against Paris, who had dominated the first leg ( 2-0).

But now, two errors from Kehrer and Buffon and a double from Lukaku (2nd, 30th) changed the situation. In the 12th minute, Bernat certainly reduced the score from a pass of Mbappe, who was mostly unrecognizable. But in the final seconds, the referee consulted the VAR to give a penalty late in the game from a handball of Kimpembe. PSG lost 3-1 and leave the Champions League for the third time in a row in the round of 16. It’s a nightmare, as Paris is the first team in the history of the Champions League to be eliminated despite a 2-0 away win in the first leg.

“We played the same game, and the same match, win or draw, we were the best team for 180 minutes,” lamented Thomas Tuchel, helpless. “I do not understand how we lost this match,” added PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi.

The most incredible: Barcelona-PSG (0-4, 6-1)

Against this PSG side, Barcelona produced the most epic comeback in football history in 2017, leaving the world in an absolute shock. Around two years ago, the Catalan club displayed a stunning performance to get past a Paris Saint-Germain side who arrived in the Camp Nou with a strong 4-0 first-leg advantage. Sergi Roberto was the man under the spotlight, scoring the golden goal in the 95th minute, to break PSG heart and turning the football world upside down. Never before has any team in Champions League history been able to overcome a 4-0 deficit, but the Blaugrana went against all odds and created the most tremendous comeback in football that will last for an eternity. After the match, the Camp Nou shook, and the rest of Europe trembled, too

Also Read: PSG – Can money buy you the best?

UEFA Champions League: Round of 16 – Round Up

UEFA Champions League: Round of 16 - Round Up

UEFA Champions League Round of 16’s first four matches came to a conclusion on Wednesday and all lived up to agreeable expectations.


On Tuesday, Roma were quite efficient in their 2-1 win over Porto, while Manchester United were humiliated 2-0 in front of their own fans by a Neymar-Cavani less PSG. Wednesday saw a rampant Tottenham Hotspur in their 3-0 win over Borussia Dortmund, while Real Madrid left it late to beat Ajax 1-0 at Amsterdam. Here’s a full round-up of the action.

Manchester United 0-2 PSG

English giants Manchester United were given a reality check by Paris Saint-Germain on Tuesday night, with the French side securing an impressive 2-0 win at Old Trafford in the Champions League round of 16. This loss was the first of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s reign as interim manager, with his previous 11 matches resulting in 10 wins and a draw.

After a well-contested first half, despite missing both Edinson Cavani and Neymar, the visitors were clinical with two quick-fire goals; first Presnel Kimpembe turned home at the far post from an Angel Di Maria corner 53rd minute, before Kylian Mbappe finished off from another Di Maria assist 60th minute giving United a huge task to overcome. It would have been more but for some fine goalkeeping from David de Gea, but matters were made worse when Paul Pogba was dismissed late on for a second yellow card, meaning he will miss the second leg.

What’s next in the 2nd leg?

Manchester United and their interim manager are no strangers to dramatic comebacks. But the Red Devils have never overturned a first-leg home defeat to win a tie in Europe. Furthermore, Paris have not lost a UEFA Champions League home game since last year, when they were already trailing Real Madrid 3-1 from the first leg. It was very much a Paris affair in Old Trafford in the 1st leg this time around, and with Paul Pogba suspended, it will be very much difficult for United to overturn the deficit on 7th March.

Roma 2-1 Porto

Two goals from teenager Nicolo Zaniolo earned Roma a valuable 2-1 win against Porto in their Champions League last-16 first leg on Tuesday. The 19-year-old continued his superb breakthrough season by finding the net twice in six second-half minutes. In doing so he became the youngest Italian to score two goals in a Champions League match.

The opening goal came after Edin Dzeko knocked down Stephan El Shaarawy’s cross for Nicolo Zaniolo to drill past Iker Casillas and into the far bottom corner. The teenager doubled his tally by tapping in the rebound after Dzeko’s shot came off the left post. For Porto, Adrian Lopez, who had entered the field eight minutes before scoring, after replacing the Algerian Yacine Brahimi, finished with a cross-shot inside the area, after receiving the ball from Brazilian Tiquinho Soares.

What’s next in the 2nd leg?

As things stand now, this tie could hardly be more balanced heading to Portugal. In all the previous European Cup/UEFA Champions League knockout ties that the home side have won 2-1 in the first leg, 90 have gone through while 89 have been eliminated in the return. Roma contributed to those numbers at this stage last season, losing 2-1 at Shakhtar Donetsk before winning the second leg 1-0. The lead for Rome side is quite slender, so on 7th March, there is immense hope and calculation for Porto.

Ajax Amsterdam 1-2 Real Madrid

Spanish giants Real Madrid struck late in the second half to secure a 2-1 win over Dutch giants Ajax Amsterdam in the UEFA Champions League round of 16 on Wednesday. Real, winner of the last three Champions Leagues, recovered in the second half after being outplayed by underdog Ajax before the break at a packed Johan Cruyff Arena, when the hosts had a goal disallowed by VAR.

It was Karim Benzema, who struck a powerful shot past Andre Onana on the hour after a strong run from the left by Vinicius Junior to put the 13-time European champion ahead. Ajax were level with 15 minutes remaining as Neres broke free down the left before cutting the ball back for Ziyech, who slotted into the bottom corner. In the end, Real showed the pedigree of champions and struck in the final minutes through Asensio. Dani Carvajal received a ball down the right and swung a pass across that Asensio latched onto with his left foot end redirected into goal for the 1-2 final, giving Real a healthy advantage going into the return leg early next month.

What’s next in the 2nd leg?

Real Madrid will be strong favorites against Ajax to finish the job when they again face-off on 6th March, for the second leg, despite being outplayed for much of this first leg. The Santiago Bernabeu is a difficult place to go but, as CSKA Moscow demonstrated a couple of months ago, not impenetrable. So, though Santiago Solari’s side are favorites to march on in the premier competition, there is still a slender hope for the high-flying Dutch outfit.

Tottenham Hotspur 3-0 Borussia Dortmund

Tottenham Hotspurs took a huge step towards the Champions League quarter-finals with an awesome display to comfortably thrash Bundesliga leaders Borussia Dortmund in a well-earned 3-0 victory in arguably the club’s greatest night at Wembley. Second-half strikes from Heung-Min Son, Jan Vertonghen and Fernando Llorente meant the hosts had one foot in the last eight after a masterclass in management from Mauricio Pochettino inspired Spurs to a historic win.

Spurs were on fire after the first half, and Son Heung-min broke the deadlock two minutes after the interval with a side-foot volley from Jan Vertonghen’s cross. Dortmund, regarded by many as favorites with Spurs missing injured talisman Harry Kane as well as Dele Alli, failed to respond and the home side rammed home their superiority in the last 10 minutes. The outstanding Vertonghen slid in on Serge Aurier’s delivery and substitute Fernando Llorente headed in Christian Eriksen’s near-post corner, with Spurs also keeping a clean sheet to enhance their chance of progressing.

What’s next in the 2nd leg?

Tottenham have lost only once in their last five visits to Germany, although that defeat came at Dortmund in the 2015/16 UEFA Europa League round of 16 first leg (0-3). Moreover, the London club have only twice lost a UEFA-competition tie after having won the home first leg, and both of those home victories had been by a single-goal margin. Dortmund, meanwhile, have won nine of the 16 ties in which they lost away in the first game and will have it all to do on 6th March, but to win with a 4-goal margin, seems like a pretty difficult job.

Man United vs PSG | UEFA Champions League Round of 16 – 3 Talking Points

Man United vs PSG | UEFA Champions League Round of 16 - 3 Talking Points

PSG got two crucial away goals in their 2-0 victory over Manchester United in the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 1st Leg.


PSG drew first blood in their Round of 16 first leg clash against Man United at Old Trafford. The Parisians came out on top with a 2-0 scoreline and despite their injury concerns Thomas Tuchel’s side proved to be too much for an in-form Manchester United here are 3 talking points from last night’s game. 

1. Angel Di Maria makes an impactful return at Old Trafford

The former Man United player was absolutely sensational against his former Club and marked his return at Old Trafford with 2 assists. The Argentine was a genuine threat at all times and did more than just be a creative outlet for the Parisians. He instigated the United fans after apparently swearing at them and picked up a beer bottle thrown at the touchline. Di Maria mocked the fans by pretending to drink the beer and yelled “HIJO DE PUTA” a Spanish slur that translates to “MotherFu***r”. Furthermore Ashley Young deliberately pushed his ex-teammate onto the sidelines but following his assists to Presnel Kimpembe and Kylian Mbappe, it’s safe to say that Di Maria had the last laugh.

2. Paul Pogba gets sent off, David De Gea avoids goal riot

Paul Pogba had stepped up for Man United post-Jose Mourinho’s sacking and the fans were expecting him to step up for arguably their biggest game of the Season yet and Pogba did the exact opposite of that. He bottled it. After being a huge protagonist in Manchester United’s resurgence under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer but Pogba failed to do that and was taken off following a second yellow in the 89th Minute and put in a very underwhelming performance. The only saving grace for United was their Goalkeeper David De Gea who made a couple of crucial saves including a one-on-one chance keeping Mbappe from scoring a double.

3. Weak PSG too good for in-form Manchester United

PSG brought a weakened team to Old Trafford with Neymar, Edinson Cavani and Thomas Meunier sidelined with Injury. Manchester United were expected to have the upper hand but the likes of Julian Draxler, Di Maria, and Kylian Mbappe really stepped up. Manchester United probably lost their best chance of getting a result against the Ligue 1 Champions. Getting 2 goals at the Parc Des Princes will be immensely difficult and Manchester United will need to put in the performance of their life to come back from this one

FIFA World Cup, Highlights: Brazil 2 – 0 Mexico

Brazil 2 - 0 Mexico

In a World Cup that has been nothing short of a rollercoaster ride, Brazil seems to be the only team that isn’t tumbling against underdog teams. Footballing normalcy was restored as Brazil expectedly dominated proceedings against Mexico in a 2-0 victory in the Samara arena Stadium in Samara.

Willian Arrives!

Brazil have had almost all their players step up and Perform in this year’s World Cup, and it was certainly Willian’s turn to arrive this time around. The Chelsea Winger was lively on the right flank and was a constant pain in the backside for the Mexican defence, particularly in the Second half. Willian cut into the box 5 minutes after the resumption and found Neymar with a low cross, the PSG star tapped in from close range to give Brazil the lead. Willian continued to exploit the Mexican wide-backs and certainly cemented his spot for the Quarter-final game against Belgium.

Brazil continued to create Chances while their defensive back-line of Filipe Luis, Thiago Silva, Miranda and Fagner remained solid as ever. Considering Fagner and Luis replaced Danilo and Marcelo while the Latter were nursing minor injuries, speaks volumes of Brazil’s squad depth. 

Coach Tite brought on Liverpool Forward Roberto Firmino on just eight minutes from full-time and he made an immediate impact! Firmino found himself staring at an open goal when Neymar’s cross came from the left and he tapped it in to score his debut World Cup goal. 

Mexican Jinx lingers on…

The Mexicans failed to make it past the Round of 16 for the Seventh consecutive World Cup. Can they break the jinx in Qatar 2022? maybe if Hirving Lozano is playing for Barcelona and tormenting defenders across the European continent. Anything can happen.

What’s next for Brazil?

Brazil takes on Belgium in the Quarter-Finals in what will be a highly anticipated encounter. Coach Tite will have to do without CDM Casemiro who picked up his second yellow card and will be suspended for the fixture, Man City war horse Fernandinho is expected to fill in. Belgium not only have the players to win the World Cup but also have immense Character and fighting spirit. A 3-2 Comeback victory against the Japanese is sure to give the Belgian red Devils confidence when they lock horns with Brazil on Friday.

FIFA World Cup: Uruguay vs Portugal, Match Prediction

Uruguay vs Portugal

Round of 16: Uruguay vs Portugal, Kick-Off: 11:30 PM (IST)

It’s Showtime! The Group Stage is done and dusted, Uruguay and Portugal take on each other in a high-stakes encounter in the Fisht Stadium in Sochi. Uruguay and Portugal have some exciting forwards in their ranks, the likes of Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani going up against Cristiano Ronaldo, Ricardo Quaresma and Bernardo Silva hints at just one thing, Defence is going to be a priority for both sides.

The equation is simple now; every game is a knockout, the winner advances to the Quarter-Finals and the loser heads back home. What makes things even more interesting, both teams will already know who lies ahead in the Quarter-Finals for the victors. It’s going to be a Scintillating contest, and we can’t wait!

Team News

Uruguay- Centre-Back Jose Maria Gimenez has regained full fitness from a thigh injury, and the Atletico Madrid man will be an important player for Coach Oscar Tabarez if Uruguay are to maintain their record of not conceding any goals in the 2018 World Cup.  

Predicted XI- Fernando Muslera, Martin Caceres, Jose Maria Gimenez, Diego Godin, Diego Laxalt, Nahitan Nandez, Matias Vecino, Lucas Torreira, Rodrigo Bentancur, Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani

Portugal- Gelson Martins, Raphael Guerreiro and William Carvalho are back in training and are expected to be in contention to make the Starting XI. Portugal have been heavily dependent on Captain and Talismanic Striker Cristiano Ronaldo and will be hoping that he can work his magic once again.

Predicted XI- Rui Patricio Cedric, Pepe, Jose Fonte, Raphael Guerreiro, William, Bernardo Silva, Ricardo Quaresma,Joao Mario, Andre Silva, Cristiano Ronaldo.

Key Players

Uruguay: Luis Suarez, the Barcelona Striker has scored two important goals in the Group Stage, and the inaugural World Cup winners would be hoping to see their prolific forward at his attacking best.

   

Portugal: Cristiano Ronaldo, did you even have to guess? Portugal and arguably the World’s best player has been nothing short of exceptional. Scoring four goals in the Group stage and is virtually carrying Portugal on his shoulders.

Also, Check out, ‘ Cristiano Ronaldo Europe’s ‘Numero uno.’

 Form- Last 5

Uruguay– W | WW | W | W 

Portugal– DW | D | W | D

Odds- SkyBet

Uruguay- 9/5

Draw- 19/10

Belgium- 19/10

Prediction, Uruguay 2-1 Portugal: Uruguay are coming off of a perfect record in the Group stage and I feel even Cristiano Ronaldo won’t be able to derail this organized Uruguay Team

Where to watch?

TV Channels (India) – Sony Ten 2, Sony Ten 3 and Sony ESPN – 11:30 PM IST

In addition, you can live stream all the Matches of the 2018 FIFA World Cup from 14th June to 15th July only on the Official SonyLIV App and the SonyLIV Website.

FIFA World Cup 2018: Favourites to qualify from each group

FIFA World Cup URUGUAY SPAIN FRANCE ARGENTINA BRAZIL GERMANY BELGIUM COLOMBIA Group

With the number of days to the 2018 FIFA World Cup down to nine, let’s try and get some predictions in. The Group stage sets up a team and gives us a basis for the rest of the tournament, with some tricky Groups in Russia this time lets try to predict who makes it through to the Round of 16 and who doesn’t.

Group A

Teams: Egypt, Russia, Saudi Arabia and Uruguay

Uruguay is certainly favorites to top the group with their lethal striker duo of Edinson Cavani and Luis Suarez along with Atletico Madrid defensive pair of Jose Giminez and captain Diego Godin, Uruguay should comfortably finish on top of the group. Russia has a home advantage but despite being hosts, We’re going to go with Mo Salah’s Egypt as the second team to go through.

Group B

Teams: Iran, Morrocco, Portugal, and Spain

This one’s easy, 2010 World Cup Champions Spain look very well balanced from attack to defence, Spain’s squad depth is immense and they will be favorites to win their group. Portugal seems all set to finish Runners-up, Cristiano Ronaldo and co. should go through comfortably.

Group C

Teams: Australia, Denmark, France, and Peru

France finishes top of this group, no questions asked Griezmann, Mbappe, Lemar, Lloris, Varane do I need to say more? Denmark on paper looks very good with the likes of Simon Kjaer, Andreas Christensen, Christian Eriksen and Kasper Schmeichel these talented players should take Denmark across the line.

Group D

Teams: Argentina, Iceland, Croatia, and Nigeria

Argentina, clear favorites to qualify in this group, Leo Messi, Dybala, Higuain, and Aguero look all set to outscore their opponents and top their group. Croatia’s deadly midfield trio of Modric, Rakitic and Kovacic can really dominate proceedings, an attack consisting of the likes of Perisic and Mandzukic isn’t too bad either.

Group E

Teams: Brazil, Costa Rica, Switzerland and Serbia

Brazil according to all the bookies are favorites to win the World Cup, so topping their group shouldn’t be a problem. Serbia and Switzerland, that’s a tough one Serbia go through for me just because they have some experienced players in all departments.

Group F

Teams: Germany, Mexico, South Korea and Sweden

Everyone would Fancy Defending Champions Germany to go through to the Round of 16, without any question. Though it’s tough to choose between Mexico and Sweden, we’re gonna go with Sweden as the Runners-up, they knocked Italy out, that has to count for something.

Group G

Teams: Belgium, England, Tunisia and Panama

Belgium and England should emerge from this Group as favorites but I’m going to go with Roberto Martinez’s Belgium to emerge as victors in Group G. England have bottled their World Cup before but shouldn’t have a problem finishing runners-up. 

Group H

Teams: Poland, Columbia, Senegal, Japan

Columbia should go on to qualify from this group comfortably considering the stalwarts in their team, James Rodriguez, Falcao, Bacca and Davidson Sanchez. Should be a piece of cake. Though Japan, Senegal, and Poland possess decent squads with a star player here and there, We’re going to go with Poland, Lewandowski would be key for their chances, but I believe they’ll make it.