BAYER LEVERKUSEN 0-4 PARIS SAINT-GERMAIN
In an amazing feat, Zlatan Ibrahimović scored his ninth and tenth goals in his last five Champions League appearances this evening as PSG tore ten-man Leverkusen apart by four goals to nil.
The Parisians were dominant from the opening whistle and got off to a perfect start when midfielder Blaise Matuidi fired his side into a third-minute lead. This was Matuidi’s first Champions League goal since scoring his last-gasp equaliser against Barcelona in the first leg of last season’s quarter-final.
After stealing the possession from Simon Rolfes, Matuidi then fed Ibrahimović and continued his run into the area to finish Marco Verratti’s pass. It was a composed finish that just crept under the body of Leverkusen ‘keeper Bernd Leno.
Laurent Blanc’ side continued to press and hunted for goals and should have doubled the lead after 11 minutes gone. The troublesome Ibrahimović had an effort shot blocked on the line by Ömer Toprak after Leno misjudged Gregory van der Wiel’s cross while he had Matuidi breathing down his neck.
Leverkusen did not play like a team sitting second in the Bundesliga and found it hard to get their game going. The hopes of getting anything out of the game were shattered by half-time as PSG found themselves 3-0 up due to two Ibrahimović goals in three minutes.
Bosnian defender Emir Spahic was caught pulling on Ezequiel Lavezzi’s shirt off the ball by referee Viktor Kassai and a penalty was awarded and Ibrahimović converted with ease.
Three minutes before the break the Swede blasted in his second and PSG’s third. Matuidi laid the ball off to Ibrahimović on the edge of the area and without a thought the Swede nearly exploded the net with left-foot drive into the top corner. It was an outstanding finish that we have seen time and time again from Ibra.
The Germans were reduced to ten men after Spahic was sent off for a second bookable offence for a harmless push.
New signing Yohan Cabaye came on and scored with four minutes of play remaining. The substitute side-footed an effort into the top corner from just inside the area after Lucas Moura had laid Maxwell’s cross into his path. It was Cabaye’s first goal for the club since joining from Newcastle United last month.
Sami Hyypia now faces an unenviable task to try motivating his side to salvage something from the return leg in Paris on March 12th.
LEVERKUSEN: Leno, Hilbert, Spahic, Toprak, Guardado, Bender, Rolfes (Reinartz 46), Castro, Sam (Wollscheid 62), Kießling, Son (Brandt 46).
SUBS NOT USED: Yelldell, Oztunali, Boensich, Hegeler.
BOOKINGS: Hilbert 15, Spahic 38, Guardado 48, Castro 58.
SENT OFF: Spahic 59.
PSG: Sirigu, Van der Wiel, Alex, Thiago Silva, Maxwell, Verratti, Motta, Matuidi (Cabaye 67), Lucas Moura, Ibrahimović, Lavezzi (Pastore 76).
SUBS NOT USED: Douchez, Digne, Rabiot, Marquinhos, Menez.
GOALS: Matuidi 3, Ibrahimović 39P, 42, Cabaye 88.
BOOKINGS: Matuidi 4.
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