13th of February 2018 Author: Johnny Karp
A real clash of the titans will take place at Santiago Bernabeu in Madrid on Wednesday as Real Madrid take on French giants Paris Saint-Germain in the first leg of their UEFA Champions League first knockout round tie. The two sides have last met in the group stage of the Champions League back in 2015 and Real Madrid won 1-0 at home after a goalless draw in Paris. Before that, the two teams clashed in the quarter-finals of the UEFA Cup in 1993 and UEFA Cup Winners' Cup in 1994 and PSG won both ties. Overall, the head-to-head record between the two teams shows a perfect balance: two wins apiece and two draws.
Real Madrid are not having a great season, the Champions League would be their only chance to rescue an otherwise underwhelming campaign. They qualified from the group stage with fair ease, but finished second behind Tottenham in Group H, a placement which eventually led to this clash of the titans in the first knockout round. Last week the Blancos defeated Real Sociedad 5-2 in LaLiga but their title hopes are gone because Barcelona are 17 points ahead. Daniel Carvajal is suspended for this match, while Jesus Vallejo and Dani Ceballos are injured.
Paris Saint-Germain have pretty much cruised through the group stage and finished at the top of the table with five wins out of six matches. Moreover, they scored no less than 25 goals in the process and conceded just four, three of them in the last match of the stage. They are on a six-match winning streak in all competitions at the moment and are comfortably leading the table in Ligue 1. Edinson Cavani is the only injury doubt for the visitors as he missed last week's 1-0 victory at Toulouse, but he will most likely be ready to play on Wednesday.
Real Madrid: Navas - Nacho, Varane, Ramos, Marcelo - Modric, Casemiro, Kroos - Bale, Benzema, Ronaldo
PSG: Areola - Alves, Marquinhos, T. Silva, Kurzawa - Verratti, Lo Celso, Rabiot - Mbappe, Cavani, Neymar
My prediction: PSG to win 2-1.
Here are the odds for the match at Bet365:
Real Madrid win - 2.45
Draw - 3.79
PSG win - 2.79
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One question comes to my mind after this one and it's - Is PSG have enough cash to by themselves a character?! It doesn't look that way...after the incredible fiasco last year in the second leg against Barcelona they still found a way to loose a game they looked the better side, still not the end for them but...
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