Barcelona and Messi are familiar frustrations for Paris Saint-Germain and Emery
- Author: Julie Sanders Feb 15, 2017,
Feb 15, 2017, 11:05
"With his mentality and knowledge of the game, I think we are better equipped than we have been in our recent matches against Barcelona". However, he has never scored in 350 minutes of Champions League action against Barcelona. Di Maria, however, proceeded to curl the ball into the top-left corner of Ter Stegen's goal from a free kick.
Paris Saint-Germain captain Thiago Silva has been ruled out of the Ligue 1 side's UEFA Champions League last-16 first-leg clash with Barcelona on Tuesday with an injury.
Barca were flat from the off, with the likes of Luis Suarez, Lionel Messi, Sergio Busquets, Andres Iniesta and Gerard Pique reduced to bystanders by a lean, focused PSG display. PSG won the match 4-0. But this season, PSG trail Monaco just as Barca trail Real Madrid in Spain. Barcelona's star attacking trio of Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Neymar all had very poor games, as they couldn't cope with the physical style of PSG's midfield trio of Marco Verratti, Blaise Matuidi and Adrien Rabiot.
Celebrating his 29th birthday, Di Maria scored his second of the night in stunning fashion from the edge of the box after 55 minutes.
The iconic Brazilian has represented both clubs in the past, with a productive spell upon arriving in Europe at the Parc des Prince allowing him to seal a high-profile switch to Camp Nou.
Each of PSG's three forwards offers something different, and they complimented each other well.
The 24-year-old Lucas, who has 34 caps for Brazil, fills with pride when speaking about his countryman Neymar.
"These are two great teams with world-class players and everything can happen".
"Our aim is to reach the final and win the Champions League". "They have a big attacking potential, work hard in defense and are incredible on the ball".
PSG have been eliminated in the quarter-finals twice, in 2013 and 2015, by Barcelona, who will start the tie as favourites. "If it had come at the start of the season I would have been more anxious, but everything has changed", PSG's Italian midfielder Marco Verratti said after Friday's 3-0 win at Bordeaux in Ligue 1, in which Edinson Cavani scored twice. But following an unprecedented 4-0 loss at the hands of Paris St-Germain Tuesday evening, Barca is now on the verge of an early exit from European's most-prized tournament. "We talked about the importance of this first leg in front of our supporters".