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Mbappe & Barcola Opened PSG's Way to the Champions League Quarter-Finals

PSG defeated Real Sociedad in the Champions League round of 16.

The Parisian stars left no chance for Real Sociedad - 2:0 at the Parc des Princes

PSG unexpectedly finished the group stage of the Champions League in second place in the group, losing to the crisis-stricken Borussia. So Parisians definitely did not expect an easy walk in the round of 16, and the draw brought them together with Real Sociedad. The Basques became a formidable force under coach Imanol Alguacil, but they periodically have problems. First of all, with implementation: they create and possess the ball a lot, but the forwards have not scored in four games in a row. At the same time, according to statistics, the French club has problems with the defense, especially at home. So an interesting duel was outlined here: weak defense against the same attack.

Paris took the ball, Sociedad pressed

The guests immediately indicated that they did not intend to act as the second number and squeezed the Parisians with pressing. Already in the 30th second, the Basques struck the first blow to the gates. And then they grabbed the opponent so much that after one of the episodes, Mbappe tore his shirt - the Frenchman flaunted his bare torso in the middle of the field and changed his uniform. And yet PSG drew pluses from the opponent's manner: the hosts regularly sent the speedy Kylian on counterattacks, from which the first dangerous moment arose in the 6th minute, in which the powerful shot of the star forward was reflected by Remiro.

Real Sociedad created their cool chance in the 15th minute, playing a free kick according to Alguacil's special recipe. Barrenetxea and Mendez stood at the ball, three times confusing opponents with false runs before the cross, and then Merino grew at the far post, who sharply shot into the center of the goalkeeper's goal. True, it turned out to be offside, but the idea is interesting.

One of the intrigues was already resolved in the first half: in the battle for possession of the ball, the advantage was confidently taken by the Parisians - 58 percent versus 42. At the same time, PSG did not apply simple ball rolling: Mbappe and Dembele regularly went dribbling, looking for moments for counterattacks. Sociedad also did not look hopeless in attack - the sharpness mainly came from Kubo.

At the end of the half, Andre Silva wanted to catch his chance in an attempt to shoot through himself. But not only did the Portuguese miss the ball, but also three defenders were already covering his shot. But Merino stood out, who finished the half with a shot off the crossbar.

In the second half, the first interesting moment arose only in the 55th minute: Barkolia ran into the penalty area, seemed to lose the ball twice, but the generous defenders of Sociedad each time returned it to the winger's host - the threat was averted by goalkeeper Remyro.

Then for several minutes in a row, PSG frightened the opponent with corners, until one of them led to a goal by Mbappe. Marquinhos dropped the ball to the far post after Dembele's cross, and Kilian put his foot in clearly. This goal became the 31st for him in 30 Champions League matches. Mbappe could have scored a second, but in the 64th minute, Remyro parried the powerful shot of the forward.

The open score raised the motivation not only of Mbappe but also of Dembele, who began to cheer on the right flank: sharply served standards, danced with the ball in dribbling. In the 66th minute, Zakharyan appeared on the field, but this changed little. The Russian had to work on Hakimi on his flank, but there were no opportunities for him to attack himself. And then the guests forgot about the opposite flank, where Barkolia's goal came from. Bradley repeated the run into the penalty area from the beginning of the half, only this time rolled the ball between Remiro's legs - 2:0.

The remaining 20 minutes did not change anything. Sociedad failed to score in the fifth game in a row and goes home as the silent outsider of this pair. PSG is unlikely to allow the Basques to eliminate such a margin.

Paris Saint-Germain - Real Sociedad Highlights

Published by Patrick Jane