In the Quarter finals of the UEFA Champions League we’ve seen two 1-1 draws involving Manchester United, Bayern Munchen, Athletico Madrid and Barcelona whereas Real Madrid and PSG looked to have booked their places into the next round with impressive wins.
On Tuesday night we started off with last year’s reigning champions Bayern Munchen facing a visit to an out of form Manchester United team. The match was hyped up to being a slaughtering for the side from Manchester, however with some very deep and well organised defending, in what was more of an away performance from the home side saw them go in at half-time at 0-0. The second half was very similar to the first but through a set-piece Moyes’s men managed to take the lead with an impressive header from their talismanic captain Nemjana Vidic. However after just 8 minutes Bayern equalised with Schweinsteiger rifling in a half-volley from just inside the box into the top corner. Although this result has given United a huge boost in morale, it still remains an uphill task for the Red devils to beat Guardiola’s side.
Also on Tuesday Catalan giants FC Barcelona hosted Athletico Madrid in what was an eagerly anticipated match. The home side as expected bossed possession throughout the game, however it was Athletico that struck first and what a strike it was, Diego the Brazilian took aim from 30 yards and smashed it into the roof of the net. Unfortunately for Madrid fans, (Athletico & Real) Barca managed to get themselves back into the tie with a well taken goal from Neymar. The result is one that will please Athletico fans more than la Blaugranna as the clubs have met 4 times this season, all being draws, therefore Diego’s away goal looks to be crucial in the outcome of the tie over two legs.
Moving forward to Wednesday, which saw two of Europe’s most financially backed clubs in the form of Paris Saint Germain and Chelsea take to the stage. Mourinho and Ibrahimovic were the figures deemed to be most influential for their side in such an important game, however it was the Argentine Lavezzi that stole the show. The tricky winger gave his side the lead after just 4 minutes with a finish similar to that of Schweinsteigers in yesterday’s match, as the winger struck with his left foot into the top left-hand corner. PSG became complacent after taking the lead early on as they began to sit back and soak up pressure, and when they won the ball they would try to play out from the back resulting in too many lost balls in the final third. Eventually PSG paid the ultimate price as Thiago Silva gave away a sloppy penalty for Hazard to coolly slot into the bottom corner. After half time both sides looked even, in spite of that PSG won a set-piece in a deadly position and Lavezzi’s ball in was too much for Chelsea to cope with as David Luiz knocked the ball in his own net. When the game reached the 90th minute it seemed both sides had settled for a 2-1 win for PSG however disaster struck as Chelsea’s defence imploded when trying to defend against Pastore whose shot slid past Cech at the near post. This result could see Mourinho losing his first ever quarter-final in the competition.
In the final game of the quarter final round up, we saw a repeat of last year’s thrilling match-up with Real Madrid taking on Borussia Dortmund. The German side got off to the worst possible start with Gareth Bale giving his side the lead after just 3 minutes of play. Then in the 27th minute Isco doubled the hosts lead. The game and the tie were put to bed after just 57 minutes when Ronaldo slotted home for his 14th goal of the campaign, equalling Messi’s record. The result is a hugely disappointing one for Jürgen Klopp, as his side were unable to take their chances, mainly due to Lewandowski’s absence. Nevertheless this Real Madrid side is looking like formidable opponents that have the capabilities to go all the way and claim their 10th European Cup.