AFTER losing last year’s Champions League finals, Paris Saint-Germain were looking to exact revenge against the club that defeated them 1-0, the slightest of margins.
And PSG wasted no time to do just that in the first leg quarterfinals match Thursday, April 8, against erstwhile tormentors Bayern Munich.
PSG won a resounding 3-2 in the defending champions’ own turf at the Allianz Arena in Munich.
The non-stop snowfall in this spectacular encounter between two of Europe’s best clubs was aptly matched by the flurry of goals.
Two of PSG’s crucial away goals came from Kylian Mbappe, both of which sneaked between the legs of Bayern players.
The first goal came quick and fast in the third minute of the match, as an unmanned Mbappe’s one-touch strike off Neymar’s deft pass from the middle sent the ball ricocheting between the thighs of goalkeeper Manuel Neuer.
Again, Neymar was involved when PSG doubled the lead 25 minutes later, when his surgical cross released Marquinhos past the offside trap and with an impeccable first touch, the striker guided and slotted the ball past a hapless Neuer.
Bayern pulled one back in the 37th minute, then equalized 15 minutes after the second half restart.
Both goals came from unstoppable headers: the first from lone striker Eric Choupo-Moting and the second from Thomas Muller.
But PSG had other plans, and this time Bayern wasn’t going to celebrate going home.
Attacking from the left flank off an Angel di Maria pass, Mbappe aimed for the far post as three defenders ganged up on him inside the box, but suddenly struck the ball toward the lower left corner, catching the once impenetrable Neuer flatfooted.
The result sets up a thrilling second leg, and with three away goals plus revenge as motivation, the French side are favorites to advance.