UEFA Champions League
Result: Paris Saint-Germain 1-2 Real Madrid (2-5 on agg.)
Date: 06 March 2018
Venue: Parc di Princes
Real Madrid ensured passage to the Champions League quarterfinals with a 2-1 victory over Paris Saint-Germain in the last 16 second-leg, with Cristiano Ronaldo and Casemiro netting the goals.
The Parisians were looking for a repeat of the 1993 quarterfinal second-leg where they overturned a 3-1 first-leg deficit with a 4-1 triumph in the return-leg at home.
It was the defending champions who provided the early scare, with captain Sergio Ramos looking to score, with the follow-up effort going over the top.
That was before Ronaldo and Lucas Vazquez combined into the box, where the ball fell for Karim Benzema, only for the Frenchman to hurriedly shoot over the top.
Benzema was then sent clear following a counterattack and the forward went toe-to-toe with Alphonse Areola, who came up tops in the end by blocking his effort into touch.
PSG threatened a half-time lead when Kylian Mbappe, Angel Di Maria and Edison Cavani combined to set up the Argentine, whose heavy first touch led Keylor Navas off his line to thwart him.
Mbappe was sent clear minutes later on the right, where poor decision-making from him saw their chance to take the lead go astray as he went straight for goal instead of setting up Cavani.
After sustaining the pressure towards the end of the first half, Los Blancos took the lead through a header from Ronaldo, who outjumped the defence to head down past Areola after 51 minutes.
PSG went forward for with the aim to get quickly into the game once more, and Cavani got at the end of his first effort on goal though couldn’t strike it properly as it was easily cleared by the opposing defence.
Unai Emery made his first change, as Javier Pastore replaced Thiago Motta who worked tirelessly all evening.
Their hopes of a comeback were thrown into disarray after Marco Verratti got his marching orders for latching at referee Felix Brych following a challenge on him.
They did, however, draw level from a corner which fell to Cavani who directed Thiago Silva’s goal-bound past Navas after 71 minutes.
Zinedine Zidane made his first substitution in Kroos who replaced Mateo Kovacic, as Benzema looked to regain the lead after going through on goal for the second time but he went wide.
The tie was sealed once and for all after Casemiro blasted home from inside the box in the 80th minute to seal the last eight spot for Zidane’s charges.